Letters to the Editor

New Medicaid rule won’t work

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin announced federal approval of Kentucky’s Medicaid waiver Friday in the Capitol Rotunda.
Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin announced federal approval of Kentucky’s Medicaid waiver Friday in the Capitol Rotunda. aslitz@herald-leader.com

Under a new Trump administration policy, Kentucky became the first state to require the able-bodied to work in order to receive Medicaid.

In spring 2017, the Kaiser Family Foundation conducted an analysis of Medicaid recipients. It found that almost 80 percent of adults in Medicaid are from working families.

Almost 60 percent are working already, without any work requirement. Unfortunately, they have wages so low they still qualify for Medicaid.

Of those who don’t work, 35 percent are disabled or ill. Another 28 percent are caretakers. Of the remaining, 18 percent are students, 8 percent are looking for work, and 8 percent are retired. That leaves about 3 percent who are defined as able-bodied but choosing not to work.

The administrative costs to oversee Gov. Matt Bevin’s work requirement Medicaid waiver would offset much of the savings of not providing Medicaid to the small number of able-bodied recipients who choose not to work.

And why are preventable sickness and death proper punishments for poor people who don’t work?

Walter Frazier

Lexington

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