SSI and Medicaid Eligibility in Oklahoma
Supplemental Security Income May Qualify You for Healthcare Options
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) provides benefits for people who have a low income, often due to a disability that prevents them from working. Monthly SSI payments can help you pay important living expenses, including possibly medical costs. Additionally, if you qualify for SSI in Oklahoma, you may be able to enroll in Medicaid, a healthcare program for low-income individuals and families. Oklahoma is one of a handful of states that administers its own Medicaid program, called SoonerCare. You must meet different guidelines and apply for this coverage separately from filing for SSI.
Can I Get Health Insurance with Supplemental Security Income in Oklahoma?
If you qualify for SSI payments in Oklahoma, you can usually apply for Medicaid coverage as well (not Medicare – this comes with SSDI eligibility). In some states, filing for SSI benefits means that you are automatically enrolled in the federal Medicaid program. However, Oklahoma and ten other states administer their own healthcare programs and therefore have their own eligibility and application requirements.
SoonerCare is Oklahoma’s Medicaid program. The eligibility requirements for this coverage include:
- You must be a citizen of the United States living in Oklahoma.
- Your situation must qualify you for one of the SoonerCare coverage categories. These categories are extensive and include children as well as pregnant women, adults with a disability and more.
- You meet the SoonerCare income guidelines. These requirements are separate from the income limits for SSI. Qualification for SoonerCare depends on your Modified Adjusted Gross Income. For an individual, your yearly income cannot exceed $24,948 for 2016 – these totals are subject to periodic adjustment. However, there are different income limits for different plans and categories.
What is the Medicaid Coverage Gap in Oklahoma?
As one of the few states that maintains separate control over its healthcare assistance programs, Oklahoma faced unique challenges when the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare, went into effect. The ACA grants tax credits to people who make between 100 and 400 percent of the poverty level. An additional provision in this law called for the expansion of Medicaid coverage so that everyone living below the poverty line would qualify. However, Oklahoma rejected this expansion and almost reduced SoonerCare by 25 percent in 2016.
The result is the Medicaid coverage gap. ACA subsidies are not available for those whose income level falls below the poverty line. However, not everyone with this kind of low income can qualify for SoonerCare under the current guidelines either. This means that some people have no healthcare options at all. Worse, without health insurance, you may not even be able to apply for Social Security disability benefits. If you cannot afford a doctor’s exam, then you will have no medical records to prove that you have a disabling injury or condition.
This healthcare crisis was a major subject of political debate in Oklahoma in 2016, and will likely continue to be an issue for the state government in the future. State politicians may find a way to close the Medicaid coverage gap, ensuring healthcare benefits for all residents. For the latest information about SSI and Medicaid coverage, contact our Tulsa law firm to speak with our lawyers.
Questions about SSI and Medicaid Eligibility? Contact Our Tulsa Attorneys Today
Filing for SSI and Medicaid is often confusing, especially considering the recent changes in Oklahoma policy. However, our Tulsa Social Security disability attorneys have been assisting disabled individuals get benefits, including healthcare, since 1993. Our lawyers always stay up to date with the latest state and federal disability regulations. As a result, we can help you explore every option available to you.
Contact us online or call (918) 587-00500 today to schedule a free initial consultation. We can review your situation and help you file for SSI so you can get SoonerCare benefits, if applicable.