How Does Government Assistance for Health Insurance Work?
Healthcare is a basic human right but there are times and situations when, unfortunately, this right is denied to many.
There are numerous health insurance programs and grants in the United States that help patients to pay medical bills.
There are several social insurance and social welfare programs funded by the US government to provide world-class healthcare to every citizen, especially the low-income, dependent individual groups.
The US government funds several health coverage programs for families in the low-income range and seniors to avail the best healthcare and medical treatments.
Medicare, Medicaid, Veterans Health Administration and TRICARE are some of the most popular government assistance for health insurance for the deserving population.
Here’s where to apply for government assistance for health insurance
Let’s check out some of the most efficient and easy sources to apply for, and successfully receive, government-aided health insurance coverage for medical treatments and healthcare needs:
Medicare is a federal social insurance program in the US. It is aimed at providing health insurance cover to the elderly (those above 65 years of age), the totally and permanently disabled as well as for patients suffering from end-stage renal disease (ESRD) and Lou Gehrig’s disease.
This federal-funded health insurance program has helped to improve the healthcare status of numerous uninsured adults suffering from chronic health disorders.
As Medicare is normally added on to a supplementary source of insurance, it ensures that the enrollee is easily able to bear the cost of unforeseen medical disorders or injuries.
Medicaid remains one of the longest-running government-funded health insurance programs in the US. It is classified as social protection or social welfare program, rather than a social insurance program.
Thanks to the latest Affordable Care Act, the scope of health treatments has increased dramatically in the past few years.
You can be eligible for applying and receiving Medicaid health coverage benefits if:
- Your income is under 133% of the federal poverty level
- You do not qualify for Medicare
- The state you reside in accepts Medicaid health coverage
3. Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)
CHIP, short for Children’s Health Insurance Program, is another excellent health insurance coverage that is jointly provided by the state and federal governments.
This program is applicable for children belonging to families that earn over the limit specified for the Medicaid health coverage but cannot buy private health insurance.
The CHIP health insurance benefits are offered by individual states according to the criteria outlined under the federal Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services.
These programs may be offered as separate child health programs, as the expansion of the Medicaid program, or a combination CHIP program.
4. Military Health Benefits
The US federal government provides extensive health insurance covers to all retired and active service members and their dependents.
This government assistance for health insurance comes under the Department of Defense Military Health System (MHS).
The MHS is offered by combining the direct care network operated and managed by the Military Treatment Facilities along with the purchased health insurance known as TRICARE.
In addition, veterans of the US Armed Forces can also avail extensive health insurance covers under the Veteran Health Administration.
5. Medicare Advantage
Medicare Advantage initiative expands the health coverage options for people with basic Medicare cover.
It was launched to satisfy the increasingly growing demand for Medicare spending and to provide additional and varied choices to Medicare beneficiaries.
6. Medicare Part D
Medicare Part D is a private insurance option for Medicare beneficiaries to purchase prescription drugs.
This is an excellent option for patients who are suffering from chronic ailments that require regular but expensive prescription drugs for control and treatment.
7. Indian Health Service
The IHS, short for Indian Health Service, is a federally funded health insurance program for indigenous American Indians to get medical assistance at IHS healthcare facilities.
In addition, this health coverage also helps bear the partial cost of some services which are provided by non-HIS healthcare services.
The good news is that there are several ways to get government assistance for health insurance. However, these are only provided to applicants who fulfill the individual criteria of these health coverage programs.
Hence, it is highly advisable to consult with your local physician or the community healthcare center to learn more about the programs and your eligibility for them.
It is also possible to get help with medical bills after insurance if you lost your insurance.