Policy Documents

An Unsustainable Path: The Past and Future of Kentucky Medicaid Spending

John Garen –

John Garen, professor in economics at the University of Kentucky and adjunct scholar at the Bluegrass Institute, writes an extensive study on the expansion of Medicaid in his state.

  • From 1999 to 2009, total federal and state spending on Kentucky’s Medicaid program rose by 54%, from $3.3 billion to $5.1 billion and Kentucky’s general fund spending on Medicaid increased by 37%, from $802 million to $1.1 billion
  • The number of Kentuckians enrolled in the program grew from about 664,000 to roughly 924,000, or 39%.
  • These increases occurred during a time where real U.S. GDP grew by 19% and Kentucky’s by only 8% and followed a decade (1989 to 1999) of even more dramatic increases in the Medicaid program.

Read a transcript of an interview with John Garen at ReformMedicaid.org.