FRANKFORT, Ky. — Gov. Andy Beshear (D) has made the first move towards shifting Kentucky back to a state-based health insurance marketplace.
"In the last four years, we moved backwards on healthcare," Beshear said.
Beshear sent the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services a declaration of intent letter to transition to a state-based exchange, starting January 2022.
The move would effectively bring Kynect back, the state-based exchange Beshear’s father, former Gov. Steve Beshear, established in 2013.
Former Gov. Matt Bevin disbanded the system in 2017, meaning people had to use the federal exchange to purchase health care plans, including Medicaid.
"We have been paying more over the last four years to get less," Beshear said.
Kentuckians have been paying about a three-percent fee to use the federal exchange, costing $9.8 million in 2018, according to the Governor’s office.
Beshear said the move to bring the online health exchange back will cost $5 million and then annual costs between $1 million to $2 million.
"We have an opportunity to be better, to get healthier, to save money, and ultimately to provide that basic human right that is health care," Beshear said.
Beshear said he plans to have more announcements on health care reform in August.