Medicaid basics in plain language
Medicaid can be a confusing and headache-inducing topic. Because it’s such a complex program, there are many misconceptions among caregivers. But it’s important to understand the basics in case your older adult needs it.
Anne Tumlinson, a Washington, DC aging services expert and the founder of Daughterhood, says that understanding Medicaid is so important because it’s the safety net for when everything falls apart. And, as she advises, the most important thing is to avoid falling for the most common myths.
In her full article, Anne explains 5 top Medicaid misconceptions in plain language. We’ve summarized the key points from her article here.
5 Medicaid misconceptions caregivers need to know about
1. Medicaid is a lot like Medicare
Nope, Medicaid and Medicare are completely different and separate programs.
Everyone can get Medicare, but not everyone can get Medicaid. Medicare covers doctors and hospitals while Medicaid covers long term care.
And, it’s possible to be covered by both programs at the same time.
2. Medicaid is available to everyone
Unfortunately not. There’s a qualification process to get Medicaid coverage. Qualifying is complicated, but you could boil it down to having very little money and high care needs.
3. Medicaid will take your parents’ home
No, this isn’t always true. It’s a complex topic with a lot of “it depends” situations (get the basics about Medicaid recovery here).
4. Medicaid is a national program that’s the same for everyone
Not true. Medicaid is actually run by states (with some federal money), so the rules are different depending on where your older adult lives.
5. Medicaid only covers nursing homes
Surprise! In some states, Medicaid will cover home and community based services. That means that seniors in those areas could receive long term care in their own homes.
Medicaid is a complicated and messy program. But it could also be an important lifeline for your older adult if they’re no longer able to pay for the long term care they need. Knowing the basics helps you plan ahead and make more informed decisions.
Recommended for you:
- 5 Medicare Myths
- What You Need to Know About Medicare Coverage for Hospital Stays
- Medicaid May Reclaim Money from Your Senior’s Estate
By DailyCaring Editorial Team
Image: Bleeding Heartland