This time I’m going to write my blog about my presentation that I made on Medicaid at the Texas Advocates Conference. The conference took place in Grapevine, Texas from July 27th-29th. It was a small group but this made it nice because we were able to have a good discussion.
One of the questions asked was “how does someone apply for Medicaid services and at what age is someone eligible for Medicaid?” In many states if a person is eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits, they automatically qualify for Medicaid. In other states, different criteria are used than those for SSI eligibility. Many states have online applications to apply for Medicaid. Please click on the “Medicaid Info by State” tab to find information about Medicaid in your own state, including a link to the state’s Medicaid website.
To apply for Medicaid, you must be a U.S. citizen (or long-term legal resident in some states) and a resident of the state where you apply for Medicaid. To apply, you will need information about your income, the amount of money you have in your bank accounts or other assets, your Social Security number, and information about your disability. Since each state has different requirements, check your state’s Medicaid website for details.
The age at which someone may apply for Medicaid depends on which program you apply for and which state you live in. Children with a disability may be eligible for Medicaid if their family income is under a certain amount, which varies by state. In some states and under some programs, children with a disability may be eligible for Medicaid even if their family’s income is above the low-income amount. Check your state’s Medicaid website to get more information.
Another discussion point at the conference was about how much money and other assets someone may have and still be eligible for Medicaid. For a single person with a disability, the maximum amount of money or assets is $2,000 and for a person with a dependent, it is $3,000. For families of children with disabilities, some states have programs that provide Medicaid with a higher maximum asset limit.
Some people may be interested in a program called Plan for Achieving Self-Support (PASS) which allows you to put some of your assets above the $2,000 limit towards training for a job or going to school. To be part of the PASS program, you need to develop a plan showing how you will learn a new skill or get an education to get a job. The goal of a PASS program is to earn enough money so that someone does not need income from the government. More information about this program is available here: http://www.ssa.gov/disabilityresearch/wi/pass.htm
It is very important to me to talk about and share ideas so we can all learn how to lead the life we want and support others to live the life they choose. I was glad to be able to answer some of these questions about Medicaid, and am grateful to Texas Advocates for having me speak at their conference!