A diverse group of Kentucky hospital leaders announced today in Frankfort, KY the launch of Balanced Health Kentucky; a non-profit, non-partisan organization to support comprehensive state healthcare tax reform to fund Medicaid expansion in Kentucky.
Hospitals have paid the state provider tax every year since 1994 and are the only healthcare category that has paid into the state Medicaid fund every year and continue to be the super majority funding source at 61% of all state revenues.
Balanced Health KY has proactively been working with industry professionals, legal experts and the Kentucky General Assembly’s former chief economist to offer lawmakers a complete legal review and an interactive and flexible budgetary toolkit to empower the General Assembly to craft conservative and comprehensive tax reform to fund Medicaid expansion.
“Today starts a new and exciting chapter in the history of Kentucky,” says Riggs Lewis, President of Balanced Health KY. “Kentucky will have an opportunity to lead the nation in supporting conservative comprehensive state healthcare tax reform that will fund Medicaid for 500,000 Kentuckians. “
Kentucky’s Medicaid budget is facing a $200-300 million shortfall over the next two years and that shortfall will nearly double when Kentucky’s federal Medicaid match will increase from today’s 6% to 10% in 2020, according to administration.
In enacting any reform, the Kentucky General Assembly has the complete authority to determine how much of the healthcare economy to include and at what rate of taxation is needed for the Medicaid budget. Balanced Health Kentucky, Inc. seeks to be part of a conversation about conservative comprehensive tax reform to ensure funding for expanded Medicaid coverage for Kentucky.
Balanced Health KY does not take a position as to which of the 18 categories to include or at what rate any category should be taxed; only that the 18 categories are available for review by the General Assembly.