Newly eligible Kentucky Medicaid members can choose from Anthem, Humana or Passport

The state has signed contracts with three Medicaid managed care companies to serve Kentuckians who will be newly eligible for Medicaid under the federal Affordable Care Act, officials said Friday.

Starting Oct. 1, people in 104 Kentucky counties who are newly eligible for Medicaid can choose Anthem, Humana or Passport as their Medicaid provider for coverage effective Jan. 1, 2014, according to a news release from the Cabinet for Health and Family Services.

Under terms of the contract, the three companies will initially serve the more than 300,000 who become eligible for Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. Beginning in July 2014, the 540,000 Medicaid members already served by managed care companies Coventry Cares or WellCare of Kentucky can choose to stay with their current provider or switch to Anthem, Humana or Passport.

The state’s contracts with the three companies will last 18 months and include the option for three one-year renewals.

“As a part of the cabinet’s continuing effort to expand choice and access to care, I am pleased that we are able to offer these new Medicaid members the opportunity to choose from such reputable providers,” Cabinet for Health and Family Services Secretary Audrey Tayse Haynes said in a news release. “We are excited about the improved health outcomes that will result from so many people having health insurance coverage, many for the first time.”

The contracts awarded Friday to Anthem, Humana and Passport cover seven of eight Medicaid regions in Kentucky. Jefferson County and the 15 surrounding counties were not included in the solicitation for managed care organizations.

Last October, the state awarded contracts to four managed care companies in the Louisville region — Coventry Cares, Humana, Passport and Wellcare of Kentucky — after the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services told the Cabinet that the region could no longer operate with a single managed care provider. Those contracts took effect Jan. 1.

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