The Medicaid program was created in 1965 when President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Social Security Act of 1965. That process created both Medicare and Medicaid. Medicare is designed to provide senior citizens over 65 and certain individuals with disabilities with affordable healthcare they might not otherwise find from a private provider. Medicaid on the other hand was developed to help low income individuals pay for expensive medical procedures and treatments. Anyone wishing to enroll in Medicaid needs to visit a Medicaid office to get the process moving.
Medicaid eligibility is based largely upon an individual’s income and other financial assets. Medicaid is designed to help those who cannot afford to help themselves. Both the federal government and state governments are responsible for controlling the program. The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) oversees the program at the federal government level. The primary duty of the CMS is to acquire and distribute funding for the program to the states. State governments are responsible for administering the program, handling eligibility requirements and applications, and securing further funding for the program. The basic eligibility standards established by the CMS include the following:
• Low income
• Limited financial assets
• Disabled children in need of care
• Senior citizens in need of nursing home care
• Pregnant women
Each state is responsible for administering their own Medicaid program, and as such is allowed to create further eligibility requirements. The rules will vary in each state with some states allowing individuals with Breast or Cervical Cancer access to Medicaid in addition to the groups listed above. The best way to determine eligibility for Medicaid is to visit the nearest Medicaid office. Every state has several social services offices located through the state to handle Medicaid issues.
Those who are eligible for Medicaid will need to fill out an application for enrollment in the program. While this form can be found online through various state and federal websites, visiting a state run Medicaid office can make the process much easier for some people. When visiting a Medicaid office to apply for coverage, individuals will need to provide the following information on their application:
• Social Security number
• Bank statements
• List of assets
• Proof of disability (if applicable)
Medicaid offices are responsible for processing any application within 45 days of completion, with a window of 90 days for those with a disability. Individuals who find themselves in need of care immediately can get medical attention at certain hospitals while their application is pending. Medicaid offices can provide an individual with a list of area providers they can go to in order to receive assistance while their application is pending.
Now that the importance of a Medicaid office location has been established, how do you go about finding one? While some states are likely to have a toll free number individuals can call to find an office location, the best place to search may be online. Individuals looking for a Medicaid office can go to either the official CMS website to search for an office near them, or go to their state or county website in order to find a list of locations. The only information individuals will need in order to find a Medicaid office location is their ZIP code.
While many people prefer the ease and quickness of using the internet to find anything they need, sometimes the internet isn’t the best solution. Medicaid offices exist for a reason. They are staffed by professionals who know all the ins and outs of the program, and these individuals are employed to help people with their Medicaid related questions. A Medicaid office is the perfect location to find answers about eligibility, enrollment, and providers.