Meet Community Engagement Rep Zach Sturgill!

Tell us a little bit about what you do.

I am a Community Engagement Representative for Passport. I get to travel around my region and educate, engage, and work with members, advocates, provider offices, etc. I also get to represent Passport in many different ways such as sitting/advising on committees, interagency councils, advisory boards, events, and much more.

What do you love about working with our members/advocates?

Stories. Everyone has a story, and with my job I am able to get to know each individual, hear their stories, and build lasting relationships. I also love to get to help people. I have a passion for serving my communities and helping those who need it.

What’s one of your favorite memories of working with our community?

At a member education session, a gentleman told me about how Passport saved his life. Because of Passport he was able to get the treatment he desperately needed. After getting help, he now has a steady job and is the primary provider for his family. Hearing these amazing stories are one of the great things that comes with my job.

Why do you think your work is important?

Being a community engagement rep, my impact is limitless. I am the bridge to resources for members and the general public. I am able to make a real difference in the health and quality of life of my communities and our members. Having the ability to help break the barriers for better health and well-being is an amazing thing.

What do you love about the community you serve?

I am my community; I have spent my whole life in Eastern KY. This area helped create the person I am today and I am forever grateful and I will do everything I can to help my communities to thrive.

How do you think we can improve health and quality of life for Medicaid/Medicare members in Kentucky?

We need to be more active in our preventative care. Having checkups, teeth cleanings, and eye checks can seem overwhelming but it is necessary for a healthier KY.

Tell us a little bit about you! 

I am 27 years old and I have lived all 27 years in Eastern KY. I have a beautiful fiancé and daughter and I am planning on getting married in November. I also have two dogs, Lucy and Tank. My favorite hobbies include working out and anything to do with sports. My favorite quote is “Leave this world a little better than you found it.” I try to live that quote every day and do my part to help.


Passport launches New Member Videos

Do you know someone who is new to Passport?  We’ve created a series of 2-minute videos to walk new members through the things they need to know. Things like what they’ll get in their welcome kit, what’s next, choosing a PCP, staying in touch with us, and earning rewards.

Members can just click on the links below. SIMPLE as that!

Go to

  • Click on What’s In Your Welcome Kit?to learn about everything members get in the mail when they first join the Plan.
  • Click on What Happens Next to learn about the first steps to take a new member.
  • Click on Choosing Your PCP to learn about the importance of a medical home.
  • Click on Staying In Touch to learn how members can connect with us on our portal, social media, and through texts and emails.
  • Click on Earn Rewards to learn how members can earn free gift cards for doing healthy things.


Success Story: Turning Life Around for Member with Bipolar Disorder and ESRD

For over 20 years, Passport member Sasha* has struggled to live a healthy, high-quality life since she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and end-stage renal disease (ESRD). She has also been involuntarily hospitalized multiple times over the years.

Recently, after the police were called many times to her house, Sasha was hospitalized at a local facility. She refused to take her medicine while hospitalized, which spiraled her even further into becoming paranoid and manic.

A Passport RN Care Advisor compassionately helped her get back on track. Together, once she was released from the hospital, they formed a plan for Sasha to take her medicine daily and to talk with her doctor if she had any concerns, instead of just stopping the medications.

They also worked on improving her hygiene – taking a bath was a big step for her.  Sasha worked at finding hobbies, family support, and church support to help her stay focused and to have a good support system.

Sasha also started dialysis during this time, and struggled with pain from surgery at times and the port access not working. Our RN encouraged her to work with providers and voice her concerns to best improve her health and safety.

Throughout the duration of the program, Sasha was able to take medications daily, attend appointments, and work collaboratively with her providers, Behavioral Health team, and Complex Care program.  She was able to avoid any unplanned hospitalizations and further medical expenses. Sasha was very appreciative of the support she received.


Family Dinner Project offers resources to bring Kentucky families together

Research shows that families who share sit-down meals are closer, healthier family units.  The Family Dinner Project, created by Kentucky behavioral health experts in the Four Rivers Region, is expanding statewide and offers families resources to guide families through positive communication, educational tools and games, and healthy recipes.

Visit the official Family Dinner Project website.

Read this recent press release from the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS).


2020 Open Enrollment Dates for Kentucky Medicaid and Medicare

It’s almost that time of year for Open Enrollment!  Kentucky Medicaid Open Enrollment is Nov 4 – Dec 13. Medicare Open Enrollment is Oct 15 – Dec 7.

Passport Health Plan and Passport Advantage members do not need to do anything to stay with Passport.

Passport Health Plan

Open Enrollment ​Time Frames: Nov 4 – Dec 13, 2019

Effective Date​: 1/1/20​

Service Areas​: All 120 counties in Kentucky​​

Phone Number: ​​1-800-578-0603 TDD 1-800-691-5566 Mon. – Fri., 7am – 7pm Eastern Time​

Passport Advantage

Open Enrollment ​Time Frames: Nov 4 – Dec 13, 2019 ​Oct. 15 – Dec. 7, 2019

Effective Date​: 1/1/20​

Service Areas​: Jefferson, Bullitt, Hardin, Nelson, Breckinridge, Carroll, Grayson, Henry, Larue, Marion, Meade, Oldham, Shelby, Spencer, Trimble, and Washington ​counties (Region 3)​

Phone Numbers: ​1-844-859-6152 (for existing members) or 1-844-643-2780 (for prospective members)TTY/TDD 7117 days a week | 8am – 8pm ET.​


Success Story: Relieving Fears for Member with Chronic Illness

One of our Care Connectors recently took a call from an elderly Passport member Patricia*, who had questions about the gift cards she could earn for the medical services she had received.

During their conversation, Patricia made a point to let our CC know that when she was first diagnosed with CHF (congestive heart failure), she was very afraid and depressed; not knowing what she was going to do. A Passport Case Manager talked with her about the illness and what she could do to improve her condition.

Patricia stated that as of today, she is still following the expert advice that she received from CM and is in much better health. The materials we sent totally helped calm her fears as well. Patricia has also been excited to receive the incentive gift cards she’s eligible for. She stated she is extremely satisfied with the services she receives from Passport and said she is never going anywhere else!

“I just wanted to pass the information along and thank everyone at Passport for every part they play in helping the members receive a higher standard of healthcare and having the opportunity to improve the members overall state of well-being,” says our Care Connector. “That’s what Passport associates accomplish when we all work together to meet the needs of our members. Thank You Passport from our member, Patricia!”

*Member name changed for privacy.


Do You Know a Passport Member Who is Pregnant?

Passport has a special program for pregnant women called Mommy Steps. Mommy Steps will help you take 3 important steps in your pregnancy: regular doctor visits, healthy eating, and making good choices.

When you join Mommy Steps, a Mommy Steps educator is here to work with you during your pregnancy to help you and your baby get the right care.

To talk to someone about the Mommy Steps program, please call 1-877-903-0082.  Read more.


Are Your Clients Ready for the Cold & Flu Season?

September is the beginning of cold and flu season. Help us remind your clients about these ways to stay healthy this season:

·       Wash their hands often with soap and water, get plenty of rest, cough or sneeze into their sleeve or elbow, and avoid others who are sick.

·       Passport members can receive an annual flu shot for free and should ask their doctor about a pneumonia shot.

·        Passport members may call our Nurse Advice Line for advice 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-606-9880.


State plans MCO Provider Forums (Open to the Public)

The Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) has announced the dates and locations for the 8 provider forums they’ll be holding this year.

Each forum will be held at a Kentucky State Park from 8:00 am – 4:00 pm.  Passport representatives will be onsite at each forum to answer any questions attendees may have.

If you know of a provider or anyone else in the community who would like to attend, please share this flyer and tell them to go to this website to register.