Vision services from Medicaid

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Medicaid coverage, a kind of health insurance which is funded by the federal government and managed by states, pays for health needs. The target groups of Medicaid include U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and people who have high medical bill, low incomes and few personal resources.

The organization of Medicaid program and its regulation

Each state in the U.S. has different medical coverage and income requirements. In fact, different states administer their own Medicaid programs, which are monitored by the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). In addition, CMS also establishes detailed requirements for service delivery, quality, funding and eligibility standards. Generally speaking, income requirements are based on the federal poverty line. For example, in 2006, the federal individual poverty line was $9,800 annual income in the 48 contiguous states, $11,270 in Hawaii and $13,200 in Alaska. For married couples, their poverty lines are higher.

Health and vision services from Medicaid and its qualified groups

Besides medical conditions such as eye diseases and some vision benefits, people eligible for Medicaid are also enabled to enjoy other health services, such as laboratory services, certain home health services, and care during and after pregnancy and so on. Currently, this joint federal-state program has covered a wide variety of groups who need health care, e.g. low-income children, pregnant women, elderly people, disabled people and nursing home residents etc. They may be asked to pay a part of medical bill while receiving a medical service and the Medicaid pays the remaining parts to health care providers directly.

Vision services for children from a special program under Medicaid

Children and teenagers under 21 can take use of the Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnosis and Treatment program of Medicaid. The vision benefits from the above services include eye exams, eyeglass frames and lenses. Many states offer similar vision services for adults and some states provide glaucoma screening for detecting this common eye disease. Medicaid coverage also pays a portion of the costs of cataract surgery, doctor care and the hospital stay.

More people will have access to Medicaid

It is exciting that President Barack Obama signed into law the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act on March 23, 2010. This meaningful act expanded Medicaid eligibility from 2014. People can call the state’s Medicaid agency for more information about state’s eligibility requirements.