Can Undocumented Immigrants Get Medicaid?

Can Undocumented Immigrants Get Medicaid – Overview

Healthcare is an essential requirement for everything in our lives. Without access to preventive services and medical treatments when needed, it becomes hard to live, work, and thrive. This is true regardless of where you live or where you belong.

Though access to healthcare is pretty simple in the United States for most, it is especially difficult for others. Several obstacles prevent significant numbers of people living in the US from access to affordable healthcare and medical services.

Being an immigrant, especially an undocumented immigrant, makes things even more difficult. But, despite your status in the country, you have a right to live a healthy and productive life. This begins with easy access to healthcare services whenever you need them.

However, as the country’s healthcare system is quite complex, it can be difficult for undocumented immigrants to decide where to seek health and medical care in the United States. So, let’s take a closer look and see if undocumented immigrants can get Medicaid or other health insurance plans.

Undocumented Immigrants and Medicaid or Medicare

Undocumented immigrants are generally ineligible for Medicaid, Medicare, and CHIP and cannot enroll in health insurance plans through the Affordable Care Act (ACA) Marketplace. There are no public insurance options available to undocumented immigrants at the federal level, though some states may offer limited emergency services.

For instance, as an undocumented immigrant experiencing serious symptoms and in need of immediate medical attention, you may be able to qualify for a short-term Emergency Medicaid option.

However, each state has its individual Medicaid program, so specific requirements can differ depending on where you live. A limited number of states extend CHIP coverage to children regardless of immigration status through state-funded programs, not federal CHIP funds.

Health Insurance for Undocumented Immigrants

Health insurance is inherently quite complex. There are numerous terms and jargon and different varieties of insurance policies to be aware of. Still, medical care and health insurance are inseparable in the US, so you must be aware of the coverage options you can choose.

Several kinds of health and medical insurance are generally available in the US marketplace, but due to few laws, insurance coverage for undocumented immigrants is significantly limited.

Undocumented immigrants may purchase private health insurance directly from insurers or through employer-sponsored plans.

Private Health Insurance for Undocumented Immigrants

Can Undocumented Immigrants Get Medicaid

Can Undocumented Immigrants Get Medicaid – Private Health Insurance for Undocumented Immigrants

Undocumented immigrants cannot participate in Medicaid, Medicare or similar federal-funded insurance programs, but they can still buy private health insurance coverage.

Private health insurance (commercial insurance) is a type of health insurance policy offered by a private insurance company. If you work in an organization that offers health insurance as part of hiring, you can get employer-sponsored insurance. This is the best advisable option for undocumented immigrants.

In addition, if your employer does not provide health insurance coverage, you can easily buy a private health insurance policy directly from the provider.

However, remember that buying private health insurance plans can be quite expensive, especially if you are an undocumented immigrant and work at a minimum-wage job. Undocumented immigrants are excluded from purchasing insurance through ACA marketplaces, which often offer subsidized plans.

The ACA is a service that allows a person to search for and buy insurance plans, including subsidized insurance policies. A subsidy is a form of tax credit that makes insurance plans cheaper for policyholders.

Undocumented immigrants’ primary option for health coverage is through more expensive private insurance plans outside the ACA Marketplace.

For assistance in finding private insurance, consulting with an insurance broker or using online resources can be helpful. You can find one easily with this Find Local Help tool at –

Additionally, if you want enrollment advice, you can also check the National Immigration Legal Services Directory at

Medical Care For Undocumented Workers in the US

Under the Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA), all individuals in the U.S., regardless of immigration status, have the right to receive emergency medical care.

If you have health insurance, it’s advisable to seek treatment from providers within your insurance network to minimize costs. You can easily find the list of healthcare providers under your insurance coverage by talking to your private insurance provider or checking the information online.

Apart from this, if you don’t have health insurance and are an undocumented immigrant in the US, you can still seek medical and health care at public and critical access hospitals, emergency rooms, outpatient facilities, etc.

Numerous non-profit organizations and federally qualified health centers (FQHCs) offer healthcare services at reduced costs or for free, particularly to low-income and uninsured individuals. These may include free clinics and federally qualified health centers (FQHC).


If you live in the United States, even as an undocumented immigrant, you can receive medical care whenever you need it. This is true regardless of where you came from or your immigration status.

Despite several obstacles to accessing healthcare services for undocumented immigrants, there are still several options to receive affordable medical and healthcare using private health insurance plans.

See Also

Health Insurance Without SSN

What is the Affordable Care Act

What is NIH

What is HHS

Can You Have Medicare and Medicaid

Does Medicare Cover Dental Implants

Follow us