Healthcare to Age 26 for Foster Youth
Starting January 1, 2014 the Affordable Care Act (you may know it as Obamacare) extended health coverage to youth who aged out of foster care on or after their 18th birthday. You may now be eligible for health insurance until your 26th birthday.
You might be eligible and we want to make sure that you know who to call to find out more. You might be eligible if you are currently a Rhode Island resident and:
You were in foster care on your 18th birthday and aged out on or after January 1, 2007;
- You were enrolled in Medicaid while in foster care;
- You are under the age of 26 years old;
- Are not otherwise eligible for Medicaid.
IMPORTANT!!! If you are still not sure if you are eligible, it can’t hurt to call DCYF and find out because this Medicaid coverage may be FREE.
Call an Eligibility Technician at DCYF Monday through Friday between 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. You have nothing to lose!! You should call the eligibility technician that matches the first few letters of your last name:
A – DE …….. Call Lisa McInnis 401-528-3638
DF – LAG …….. Call Lauren Joaquin 401-528-3637
LAH – RAL …….. Call Steven Woodruff 401-528-3643
RAM – Z …….. Call Daisy Castrillon 401-528-3642
What you’ll need to get and keep your coverage:
- A copy of your photo ID;
- A copy of your birth certificate;
- You MUST contact DCYF and the health plan when you move and provide them with your new address. You will be asked to mail something back to prove you still live in Rhode Island. If you don’t do this you will lose your health care coverage.
As always you can call the staff at Foster Forward (401-438-3900) with questions and we will do our best to help you sort through this important information!
Additionally, we’d love to have feedback from you about how enrollment is going, what is working and what you may have had trouble with when enrolling. Any feedback would be kept private and will help us support making it work better. Call Caitlin Divver at 401-438-3900 x109 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Resources For More Information
- To read more information from the Department of Children, Youth and Families about how to enroll or reenroll in health care, please read their Factsheet.
- To learn more about the Rhode Island Health Coverage Project, an initiative of The Economic Progress Institute and Rhode Island KIDS COUNT, click here.
- For information on the estimated impact and number of youth who might be eligible for this extended coverage check out this Factsheet from Rhode Island KIDS COUNT.
- For a basic one page information sheet that you can share with youth and print out to put on the fridge click here.
If you don’t qualify for the extended health insurance because of your former foster care status you can find the right coverage with HealthSource RI. Use this site, contact them by phone at 1-855-840-HSRI (4774),mail an application, or drop by in-person to get started.