Kentucky, other states push health care coverage

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Graphic Courtesy: MGN Online

FRANKFORT, Ky.(WTVQ) – Kentucky is joining a broad coalition of states – plus consumer and health care groups and health care providers – in the launch of Get Covered 2021, a national effort to encourage mask wearing and substantially increase the number of people with health coverage.

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear, as well as other governors, are declaring Dec. 10 Get Covered America Day, a day of awareness and action about COVID-19 safety and getting enrolled in health coverage.

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“Health care is a basic human right,” says Beshear. “It’s our job to work quickly and diligently to get health coverage for as many Kentuckians as possible. With COVID-19 negatively impacting every state, we also need more people wearing masks because when you mask up, you help protect yourself and those around you, which slows the spread of this devastating virus.”

In Kentucky, 239,000 residents are currently uninsured, but more than half – 175,000 – qualify for financial help to pay for health coverage or free coverage through Medicaid.

The newly launched kynect website – kynect.ky.gov – is a one-stop portal for finding health coverage and other benefits for Kentuckians.

The website is run by the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS). Cabinet Secretary Eric Friedlander says kynectors around the state are holding virtual enrollment events to help the uninsured find affordable or no cost-coverage. kynectors are front-line staff who work directly with Kentuckians in need.

“We want everyone who qualifies for financial assistance for a Qualified Health Plan or Medicaid to get it,” says Friedlander. “Dealing with a devastating illness is bad enough, but it shouldn’t ruin a family financially. Having health coverage and getting treated early is good for everyone in our entire state.”

The public is being asked to help spread awareness of Get Covered America Day by posting photos on social media of themselves wearing masks along with messages encouraging others to mask up.

Recommended hashtags are #getcoveredkentucky, #getcoveredamerica and #getcovered2021.

“This is a way to show you care about yourself, your family, your friends and your community,” says CHFS Deputy Secretary Carrie Banahan, who is serving as co-chair of the national Get Covered America Day effort. “We all know someone whose life has been changed because of the lifesaving care they received. It could be your mother, grandfather, daughter or best friend. So, right now, as we face the challenges of COVID, let us also work to make sure everyone has the same access to care that is provided by having insurance coverage.”

In addition to Kentucky and the District of Columbia, the other states participating in the Get Covered America Day are:

  • California
  • Colorado
  • Connecticut
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Minnesota
  • Nevada
  • New Jersey
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • Vermont
  • Washington