Governor Bevin Requests Modifications to Kentucky HEALTH Proposal

KY Health NoticeOn Monday, July 3, Governor Bevin’s office formally issued a statement to the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), requesting three modifications to the original 1115 Waiver request known as Kentucky HEALTH around three areas: Community Engagement, Member Disenrollment, and Presumptive Eligibility.

The proposed revisions do NOT propose any changes in benefits, cost sharing or delivery system.

There will be a voluntary 30-day public comment period, which will last until August 2 and include two public meetings – Friday, July 14, in Somerset and Monday, July 17, in Frankfort.

For more information, please check out the Kentucky Department for Medicaid Services (DMS) website.

 

Kentucky DMS posts Medicaid Address Change Form online for members who need it

Kentucky Unbridled Spirit logoThe Kentucky Department for Medicaid Services (DMS) has posted a Medicaid Change of Address form online for any Kentucky Medicaid member who needs to update their home address. The form is available by clicking here.

If DMS receives any returned mail from an address that is not current, members could be dis-enrolled from Passport (and lose all of their Passport-specific benefits). However, if this happens, the member will NOT lose their overall Medicaid eligibility; instead, they will remain eligible for Kentucky Medicaid and will be in the fee-for-service (FFS) category until their address is updated.​

If an address appears incorrect, the member will have the remainder of that month plus another month to update the address.

To update their address, the Kentucky Medicaid member just needs to print out the form, fill it out, sign it and either fax it to 1-502-573-2005 or send it by regular mail to Centralized Mail, PO Box 2104, Frankfort, KY 40601.

 

Passport Health Plan Continued to Help Kentuckians Live Healthier Lives in 2016

Passport logoIt was a busy and very productive year for Passport Health Plan, as the nonprofit, community-based managed care organization (MCO) has seen extensive growth in membership and continued to help all Kentuckians live healthier lives.

Some highlights during the year include:

  • Passport and Evolent Health announced the formation of a strategic alliance that created The Medicaid Center of Excellence (MCOE), which combines Passport’s expertise in Medicaid managed care with Evolent’s industry-leading technology and operations to offer centralized services for provider-led Medicaid health plans nationwide.
  • Passport was once again named the top Medicaid plan in Kentucky, rated a 4 out of 5 by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) for the second straight year, according to “NCQA’s Medicaid Health Insurance Plan Ratings 2016-2017.”
  • Passport received the highest number of five-star “excellent” ratings as tallied by the Kentucky Department for Medicaid Services (DMS) in their “2017 Guide to Choosing a Medicaid Health Plan,” which compared the five Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) that serve Kentucky Medicaid members.
  • Passport became a statewide sponsor of the American Diabetes Association (ADA) to raise awareness about healthy nutrition, exercise and other steps Kentuckians can take to avoid the onset of diabetes, which affects close to 600,000 Kentuckians affected by diabetes and over 1.1 million at risk for diabetes.

Please click here for a closer look at some of the more notable events that happened in 2016 for Passport.

 

Message from Kentucky Department for Medicaid Services (DMS)

Kentucky Unbridled Spirit logoThe Department for Medicaid Services is aware of issues with the new benefind system, which processes all benefit programs administered by the Department for Community Based Services.  It has resulted in discontinuation letters being sent in error or the system incorrectly showing an individual as ineligible.  The Cabinet for Health and Family Services is taking action to ensure that no individual loses benefits as a result.  If a person was eligible for Medicaid benefits in March, the person will automatically be eligible for benefits in April.

PLEASE NOTE: Due to system errors, Medicaid is extending benefits to all members through April 30th.

The Cabinet and DCBS are working with its technology partner, Deloitte, on system issues to stop the incorrect notices and properly reflect eligibility.  Medicaid requests that providers continue to provide necessary services and prescriptions to members during this time.  For more information: http://chfs.ky.gov/default.htm

 

Stephen Miller of Louisville named Commissioner of Department of Medicaid Services (DMS)

Kentucky capitolStephen P. Miller, CPA, has been named Commissioner of the Kentucky Department of Medicaid Services (DMS).

“As we work to redesign the Medicaid program and transition it to a more affordable, sustainable model tailored to Kentucky’s needs, it is important to have someone with a deep understanding of the healthcare industry leading the Department of Medicaid,” Gov. Matt Bevin said in a release. “The Commonwealth is fortunate to have someone of Stephen Miller’s caliber, financial acumen, and business experience willing to serve in this role.”

“As a CPA with more than two decades of financial management experience in a healthcare environment, I believe Steve is an excellent choice to lead the Department for Medicaid Services,” said Vickie Yates Brown Glisson, Secretary of the Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS). “Steve will be a tremendous asset to both the Governor and the Cabinet as we seek to address the financial unsustainability of the current Medicaid model in a way that will improve health outcomes for its members and save taxpayer dollars.”

Miller has spent the past 24 years as Vice President of Finance with the Kentucky Hospital Association (KHA), where he assisted in the development of KHA’s position on pending legislation and monitoring federal and state reimbursement issues. In his role, Miller interacted with Medicaid and Cabinet leadership on many issues related to hospital reimbursement and regulatory issues.

“I look forward to heading the agency that provides the safety net for the most vulnerable of Kentucky citizens,” said Miller.

Miller is a graduate of the University of Louisville, where he received a Bachelor’s degree in accounting. He and his wife Mary, along with their two married daughters live in Louisville.

 

Passport Health Plan Tops Annual Rating System Comparing KY’s Medicaid Managed Care Organizations

Passport logoPassport Health Plan has again topped the annual rating system that the Commonwealth of Kentucky uses to compare the different managed care organizations (MCOs) that administer Medicaid benefits to residents.

According to a document produced by the Kentucky Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) Department for Medicaid Services (DMS) and sent to all Kentucky Medicaid members ahead of the Medicaid Open Enrollment period – which runs from Monday, October 19, through Friday, December 11 – Passport received an excellent rating (5 stars out of 5) in several health care categories. Those categories are:

  • Childhood Immunizations
  • Adolescent Immunizations
  • 21 and Under Dental Visits
  • Adult Doctor Visits
  • Parent Overall Satisfaction with Child’s Health Plan
  • Adult Overall Satisfaction with Health Plan

“At Passport Health Plan, we treat our members and healthcare partners with respect because we take the time to care,” said Passport CEO Mark B. Carter. “We are proud of our history of serving the Commonwealth and look forward to many more years helping Kentuckians live healthier lives.”

Ratings are compared to NCQA (National Committee for Quality Assurance) national averages and from information submitted by the health plans. For resources to help learn more about managed care, go online to the DMS website or call DMS at (855) 446-1245.

For more information, please click here.

 

Passport Teams with State Officials and Healthcare Providers to Reduce Number of Kentuckians Using Tobacco

No Smoking SignAs part of the state’s push to help reduce the number of Kentuckians using tobacco products, the Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) Department for Medicaid Services (DMS) is working with Managed Care Organizations (MCOs) such as Passport to coordinate information with our network of healthcare providers.

Information was recently sent to these providers, encouraging them to “Help your Patients BREAK the Habit” and quit smoking. According to the document:

Tobacco cessation medication and/or nicotine replacement therapy is available to Kentucky Medicaid members who use tobacco products.

Dual-eligible members may be eligible to receive some of the available medicines to help them quit using tobacco.

A prescription is needed for all tobacco cessation medications, including over-the-counter nicotine replacement products.

No copayment is required for these medications. Some products are not preferred and will require review via the prior authorization process.

Tobacco cessation assessment takes a minimum of 10 minutes, is performed face to face and must include: asking the patient about tobacco use; advising the patient to quit; and assessing the patient’s readiness to quit. If the assessed member’s readiness to quit occurs during a regular office visit, the tobacco cessation counseling can be billed separately using CPT Code 99407. The assessment must include history of tobacco use, medical and psychosocial history, review of coping skills and barriers to quitting.

Kentucky’s Tobacco Quitline 1-800-QuitNow (784 8669)

To see a PDF of the document that was sent to providers, please click here. If you have any questions, please call Passport at 1-800-578-0603 or talk to your primary care provider.

 

Kentucky Works to Make Sure all Medicaid Members Keep Their Address Current and Up to Date

KY Youth Advocates logoThe Kentucky Department for Medicaid Services (DMS) is working with Passport and other healthcare providers to make sure all Medicaid members keep their address is updated with the state.

If DMS receives any returned mail from an address that is not current, members could be dis-enrolled from Passport (and lose all of their Passport-specific benefits). However, if this happens, the member will NOT lose their overall Medicaid eligibility; instead, they will remain eligible for Kentucky Medicaid and will be in the fee-for-service (FFS) category until their address is updated.​

If an address appears incorrect, the member will have the remainder of that month plus another month to update the address.

Kentucky Youth Advocates (KYA) recently posted an article on their website about this, along with instructions for members to update their address. According to the post:

  • If health coverage was secured through the Kynect website (ky.gov), the address can be changed online. Or, a member can call 1-855-459-6328 to change an address.
  • If a member applied for health coverage through DCBS, the member can call 1-855-306-8959 to change an address.
  • If a member applied for health coverage through SSI, the member can call 1-800-772-1213 to change an address.

If you have any questions about this, please contact Kynect at 1-855-459-6328 or Passport at 1-800-578-0603.

 

More Information About Making Sure Members’ Address are Kept Up-to-Date with DMS

KentuckyIn a recent post regarding a change in our DMS contracts related to ensuring members’ addresses are correct, three key facts about were missing:

  • Once a member is flagged as having a “bad” address – either because they no longer live in the same place or because the Postal Service has issues delivering their mail – we (Passport) have at least 30 days to remedy the situation.
  • If a member’s mail is returned and their address isn’t updated in time, they will be dis-enrolled from Passport (and lose all of their Passport-specific benefits), but they will NOT lose their overall Medicaid eligibility. They will remain eligible for Kentucky Medicaid, and will be in the fee-for-service (FFS) category until their address is updated.​
  • This change is ultimately a good thing for all of our members and providers, as it will ensure that our members are getting the best care possible.

If you have any questions about this, please contact Kynect at 1-855-459-6328 or Passport at 1-800-578-0603.

 

More Kentucky Residents on Medicaid Getting Preventive Health Services, Report Shows

kyhealthThe number of Kentuckians who received preventive health services has shot up since Medicaid expansion took effect in late 2013, says new data from the state Department of Medicaid Services (DMS) that was presented earlier this week during a meeting Wednesday of the oversight team for kyhealthnow, an initiative launched by Gov. Steve Beshear in early 2014.

In fact, “Kentuckians on Medicaid were far more likely to get cancer screenings, physicals and dental check-ups after the state expanded the government program for the poor and disabled through the Affordable Care Act,” according to an article in the Louisville Courier-Journal.

“I have said from day one that giving every Kentuckian access to affordable quality health care coverage will help us tackle our ongoing abysmal health outcomes,” Gov. Beshear said in a release. “We are now seeing our citizens take even greater advantage of the opportunity to receive these life-changing screenings for cancers like breast and colon. No longer are their medical choices limited to emergency room or charity medical visits. As these preventive health services increase so does the compensation to our medical providers who are helping to improve the wellness of our Kentucky families. I’m excited about the enormous gains we’re seeing and even more excited about the long-term implications for our state’s health.”

To read the 2015 kyhealthnow Annual Report, click here.