Republican state Senator and doctor concerned Medicaid expansion will go away if waiver not approved

As the fate of Kentucky’s proposed Medicaid waiver which would make changes to the program in an attempt to make it sustainable currently lies in the hands of the federal government, state Sen. Ralph Alvarado says he fears the expansion will be ended if the federal government does not approve Gov. Matt Bevin’s proposal.

Alvarado, a Winchester physician and state Senator, told The Bottom Line he believes the governor’s Medicaid proposal is a step in the right direction in being able to keep the increased number of Kentuckians covered by the government program while also finding better ways to make it more affordable for the state.

However, Alvarado worries that if the federal government does not approve Kentucky’s waiver or attempt to compromise with Gov. Bevin on the issue, the state’s Medicaid expansion will be no more.

“I am hopeful that the federal government will work with our state, get some aspect of it—if they aren’t going to allow some, they are going to allow others. I think it will help save the expansion if it can happen. If it doesn’t, I’m fearful it will go away,” Alvarado said.

When asked if the legislature will take up the issue if the federal government does not approve the waiver and the expansion is disbanded, Alvarado noted his efforts to bring it to a floor debate during the 2016 session without success and said he is unsure what the General Assembly’s response would be.

Hear more from Alvarado on the Medicaid expansion and waiver here:

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