Kentucky – $1.1 Billion Available to Support Hospitals

Gov. Beshear: $1.1 Billion Available Next Year to Support Hospitals, Advance Quality Care

FRANKFORT,  KY (STL.News) On Wednesday, Gov. Andy Beshear announced Kentucky hospitals that meet federal quality measures can receive up to $1.1 billion in increased payments next year.

The funding, available through a federally approved, state-directed payment model, helps deliver and expand quality health care to the commonwealth’s 1.6 million Medicaid members.

With over one-third of Kentucky’s population enrolled in Medicaid, the Governor said the payments are critical to building a better Kentucky by ensuring equal access to care in the commonwealth.

“Health care is a basic human right, and our people deserve the best care possible,” Gov. Beshear said.  “This year, our state has faced so much tragedy and heartbreak from the pandemic, tornadoes and other natural disasters, and we are thankful to our hospitals for continuing to provide quality health care to our Kentucky families in need.”

Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) Secretary Eric Friedlander said this is the second announcement of additional funding to Kentucky hospitals in 2021.  In January, the Governor announced Kentucky hospitals would receive an additional $800 million to $1 billion annually to help advance clinical quality care to Medicaid members and provide a stable base for hospitals financially stressed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kentucky Hospital Association (KHA) President Nancy Galvagni said: “On behalf of our members, KHA is thrilled the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services approved continuation of the Hospital Rate Improvement Program for calendar year 2022.  The ongoing partnership between CHFS and Kentucky’s hospitals made this application successful, and we are grateful to Secretary Friedlander, Medicaid Commissioner Lisa Lee and her staff for all of their work to achieve this outcome for the hospitals and our patients.  We look forward to working with our members and the cabinet to further improve the care all Kentuckians receive.”

“Medicaid is the largest payer of health care services in our commonwealth and we must continue to think outside the box to bring this program further into the 21st century,” said Commissioner Lee.  “This collaboration between Medicaid and KHA is an example of that type of innovative thinking, allowing us to reward our providers for delivering quality services to our members.”

Per Kentucky state law, university hospitals and state mental hospitals are excluded from this payment increase.

The state-directed payment initiative is in place for all of 2022 and would need to be renewed each year going forward.