How to Apply for Medicaid Benefits

By Kendra Mouncil Ricks

Medicaid is a federal program that provides health care benefits for children or families who qualify. Medicaid provides health care benefits for services such as eye care and regular doctor visits. Qualified applicants are usually pregnant women or low income families with little or no income.

  1. Check with your local department of health or social services department in your state to find out if you qualify. Criteria for qualifying varies in every state. Minimum qualifications are basically limited to your income and family size.

  2. Obtain an application by calling your local department of health or state's social services department. Complete the application, and make sure to answer all questions that apply. You will be asked for certain documents, such as birth certificates, proof of residency, proof of income (if any) and any other money that you receive. These documents must be brought in when requested, so make sure that you have them.

  3. Mail the form to the address provided on the form, or you can hand deliver the form yourself. Once your application has been received and reviewed, you will be called in for an appointment. This is when you must bring in all documentation that verifies what you reported on your application. Be honest and accurate when giving information for your case. Everything will be verified, so make sure you give accurate information. This way, you will have a better chance of getting approved for Medicaid benefits.

  4. Follow up to find out the status of your application. The length of time that it takes to find out whether you are approved depends on your state. You will be sent a card for insurance and health care purposes once approved. This card is to be presented whenever you go for any type of medical treatment. Medicaid will pay for any charges incurred, as long as your visits are medically necessary and not cosmetic.

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