Key quote: “I’m not giving up on this.” Kelly said. “When the Legislature convenes in January, I will propose a 6th Medicaid expansion, and I hope the legislative leadership will do the right thing.”
Kansas governor’s renewed call for Medicaid expansion focuses on mental health benefits.
Rachel Mipro, Kansas Reflector
June 29, 2023
- The Democratic governor has pushed for Medicaid expansion for years, but Republican leaders in the legislature have blocked the bill from moving forward. By expanding eligibility for health insurance coverage, thousands of Kansans could receive mental health treatment, the governor said.
- Kelly, along with Republican U.S. Sen. Jerry Moran and Democratic U.S. Rep. Sharice Davids, appeared at the groundbreaking for the 72-bed Olathe Mental Health Hospital to emphasize the importance of prioritizing mental health.
- In Kansas, Medicaid is provided through Cancer and is limited to low-income people with disabilities or children. Medicaid expansion increases eligibility for adults under 65 with incomes up to 138% of the federal poverty level. If the state expands enrollment of uninsured adults in Cancer, thousands of low-income families will have access to health care options.
- Kelly estimated that Medicaid expansion would provide affordable health care to 150,000 Kansans, and that nearly a third of those Kansans currently struggle with mental health issues or substance abuse disorders. Expanding Medicaid would cost an estimated billion dollars in federal aid. Kansas is one of 10 remaining states that have not adopted expansion.