Medicaid is a program that may help you or someone in your family access medical care, oral health care and mental and behavioral health care based on income or a disability. Even if you are not eligible at this point in time, eligibility rules are always changing, particularly as an individual moves from childhood into adult services.
You may be surprised to know that Medicaid is not just for those with very low income. It also includes:
- Cash Assistance
- Medical Assistance
- and SNAP (also known as food stamps)
For more information on Cash Assistance or SNAP, please consult your local county department of human services.
There are also programs known as Buy-in Programs. Eligibility for these programs is based on:
- level of disability
- level of income
- The individual applying for the Buy-in Program must meet the Social Security Administration's definition of disability.
Waivers are available to people who are over-income, or who need additional services other than standard Medicaid benefits. Metaphorically speaking, if you think about Medicaid benefits as a house, waiver benefits are like a garage. You can have a house without a garage, but not a garage without the house. You can add on waiver benefits (the garage) to regular Medicaid benefits (the house), but you cannot have waiver benefits without regular Medicaid benefits.
For more information on buy-in and waiver benefits, please see the other sections of this training module.
Applying for Medicaid
As you can see, Medicaid is a program that may help you or someone in your family access medical care based on income or a disability. Please keep in mind that even if you are not eligible at this point in time, eligibility rules are always changing, particularly as an individual moves from childhood into adult services.