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Frequently asked questions about Medicaid

Medicaid is a federal benefit program that many people in the United States use. Despite the fact that it is a widespread program, many people do not fully understand how to access it, how to apply or who is eligible.

If you have questions about Medicaid, it is important to seek out accurate information to effectively evaluate how the program may fit into your particular situation. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about this program and a short explanation for each:

1. How do I know if I qualify for Medicaid?

Although Medicaid is a federal program, each individual state administers the program for its state's residents. Therefore, you should direct questions about eligibility to your individual state Medicaid office, rather than at the federal level. There are also qualified Medicaid attorneys who assist clients every day with their applications. This is because people get denied when they apply for the first time for benefits. Broadly speaking, however, Medicaid is available to individuals age 65 and over who meet certain asset and income limits set by their individual state.

2. Do I have to be poor to qualify for Medicaid?

A common misconception about the Medicaid program is that people with too many assets cannot qualify. This is not true. There are ways that people can effectively plan in terms of their finances to successfully qualify for Medicaid. Planning for Medicaid eligibility can be part of a more comprehensive overall elder care plan.

3. What benefits does Medicaid cover?

Medicaid provides health insurance and also covers long-term care costs, such as a nursing home or at-home care. However, it does not cover prescription drugs. There is often quite a bit of confusion between Medicaid and Medicare, so it is important to consult with a professional, such as a specific Medicaid attorney, who can properly advise you about your exact situation. The benefits that you need now may not be the benefits you need later. 

These are just a few of the many questions regarding the Medicaid program. If you run into problems while trying to research answers to your questions, do not hesitate to seek professional assistance.

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