Kansas State Specific Strategies

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In April 2007, the Kansas Legislature passed Senate Bill 11. Section four of the bill would create a phased-in premium assistance program that would provide premium subsidies for Kansans who earn less than 100 percent FPL to purchase private insurance actuarially equivalent to the state employee health plan. By 2009, Kansans who earn below 50 percent FPL would receive the assistance and each year afterwards the upper income limit would increase by 25 percent until the maximum of 100 percent FPL. The Kansas Health Policy Authority is authorized to seek federal financial participation.

In addition to the premium assistance program, Senate Bill 11 authorizes:

  • Loan guarantees for eligible primary care safety net clinics
  • The creation of the Small Employer Cafeteria Plan Development program to encourage small employers to take advantage of the federal pre-tax premium rules.
  • The authorization of grants or loans for the purpose of forming associations to increase access to health care.
Senate Bill 11 begins to reform the health system incrementally by increasing health insurance coverage and outlining a roadmap to develop health reform options for consideration by the 2008 Kansas Legislature. Premium assistance is part of the short-term plan. In November 2007, the Authority and Health for All Kansans Steering Committee presented data-driven health reform options to the Governor and Legislature. The Authority and Steering Committee is working with four Advisory Councils, comprised of stakeholders, who will provide input and recommendations to form a plan that impacts the health of Kansans.
MediKan - MediKan is health program that covers adults with disabilities who do not qualify for Medicaid, but are eligible for services under the State’s General Assistance program. MediKan provides limited benefits to adults whose applications for federal disability are being reviewed by the Social Security Administration. Health benefits include the provision of medical care in acute situations and during catastrophic illness.
Overall, the scope of services covered by MediKan is similar to that covered by Medicaid, but a number of restrictions and limitations apply. A majority of the individuals who qualify for MediKan are in the process of applying to the federal Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program. After these individuals qualify for SSI, they will transfer to the Medicaid program.