Understanding Medicaid in Nassau County

Empower seniors with key insights on Medicaid in Nassau County, from eligibility to COVID-19 impacts.

March 26, 2024

Understanding Medicaid in Nassau County

In order to address the needs of seniors and caregivers, it's essential to understand the specifics of the Medicaid program in Nassau County. This program serves as a vital resource for many residents, providing coverage for a range of healthcare services.

Overview of Medicaid

Medicaid is a joint federal and state program that provides health coverage to people with low income, including some low-income adults, children, pregnant women, elderly adults, and people with disabilities. In Nassau County, which is part of the Long Island region (PH-P5), Medicaid pays for a range of services including Medical Transportation, Home Care, Child Health Plus, Skilled Nursing Facility, and more for eligible individuals.

With the implementation of the Affordable Care Act in 2014, the process for applying for Medicaid benefits underwent some changes. Applicants in the Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) category must apply through New York State of Health by calling 1-855-355-5777 [1].

Eligibility Criteria

The eligibility for Medicaid in Nassau County is determined based on a number of factors including income, age, and disability status. People who receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) are automatically eligible for Medicaid and may qualify for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Emergency Assistance to Adults, and other services through the local district offices.

Furthermore, children under 19 years old can be covered under the Child Health Plus program. In this case, the Medicaid program evaluates every child's eligibility for Medicaid and those not eligible are assessed for Child Health Plus B [1].

Understanding the specifics of Medicaid in Nassau County is key to ensuring that seniors and caregivers are able to access the necessary healthcare services. It's important to research and understand the eligibility criteria and application process in order to make the most of the benefits available.

Services Covered by Medicaid

Medicaid in Nassau County offers a range of services to eligible individuals, providing essential healthcare coverage to many low-income individuals and families. These services include various types of medical services, long-term care services, and the Child Health Plus Program.

Medical Services

Medicaid covers a variety of medical services for eligible individuals. These include doctor visits, hospital stays, maternity care, prescription drugs, and mental health services [1].

Long-Term Care Services

Long-term care services are a crucial part of Medicaid coverage in Nassau County. These services help eligible individuals access the care they need to remain safely in their homes and communities. Coverage includes home care, adult day care, and nursing home care. The aim of these services is to provide care and support to those who need assistance with daily living activities, promoting their independence and enhancing their quality of life.

Child Health Plus Program

For children under 19 years old, Medicaid in Nassau County offers the Child Health Plus Program. Every child's eligibility for Medicaid is evaluated and those who are not eligible are assessed for Child Health Plus B. This program ensures that children, regardless of their family's income, have access to essential healthcare services, including preventive care, outpatient services, and emergency care.

The services covered by Medicaid in Nassau County provide a lifeline for many residents, delivering crucial medical and long-term care to those who need it most. Whether it's routine doctor visits, home care services, or child health coverage, Medicaid provides a comprehensive healthcare solution for eligible individuals and families.

Medicaid Managed Care in Nassau County

Understanding managed care is crucial for Medicaid beneficiaries in Nassau County. It's a system that seeks to integrate the services of doctors, hospitals, and health care specialists into a health plan network to manage the healthcare of its enrollees.

Introduction to Managed Care

Managed Care was introduced in Nassau County in 2001, following a "waiver" granted by the federal government to New York State in 1997. This waiver allows the state to require all Medicaid beneficiaries, with some exceptions, to join a Medicaid Managed Care Plan. Under managed care, Medicaid beneficiaries receive the same benefits as fee-for-service Medicaid through their managed care plan [3].

Health Plans Available


Health Plans

Exclusions and Exemptions

Not all Medicaid recipients in Nassau County are required to join a managed care program. There are certain individuals who are excluded or exempt from mandatory participation. Those who are exempt may choose to join a plan voluntarily, but it is not required. Those who are excluded from the program cannot join a plan.

Understanding these aspects of Medicaid Managed Care is essential for beneficiaries in Nassau County. It allows individuals to make informed decisions about their healthcare, ensuring they receive the necessary care and support.

Impact of COVID-19 on Medicaid

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on Medicaid in Nassau County, affecting enrollment, spending, and posing future challenges.

Increase in Enrollment

As of March 2021, Medicaid enrollment in Nassau County had increased by 15% compared to pre-pandemic levels, according to the New York State Office of the State Comptroller. This increase in enrollment is in line with the overall growth in the Medicaid caseload across New York State during the pandemic.

Period Medicaid Enrollment Increase
Pre-Pandemic 0%
March 2021 15%

This surge in enrollment is indicative of the increased need for healthcare services during the COVID-19 crisis.

Rise in Medicaid Spending

Alongside the rise in enrollment, Medicaid spending in Nassau County also experienced a significant increase during the pandemic. The New York State Office of the State Comptroller reports that expenditures reached approximately $2.2 billion for the county's Medicaid program in 2020.

This spike in spending was primarily driven by the rise in Medicaid enrollment and the additional costs associated with providing healthcare services during the pandemic. The increased Federal Medical Assistance Percentage (FMAP) provided by the federal government was crucial in helping New York State, including Nassau County, manage this surge in Medicaid-related costs.

Future Challenges

Despite these measures, challenges remain for Nassau County and New York State's Medicaid program. These include addressing the sustainability of Medicaid funding, managing ongoing enrollment growth, and navigating potential policy changes that may impact Medicaid coverage and costs in the future [4].

Furthermore, despite Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), healthcare access issues persist in Nassau County, particularly for minority populations and those with limited English proficiency, as reported by the Nassau County Department of Health.

The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the critical role of Medicaid in providing access to healthcare for Nassau County's residents. As the county continues to navigate the ongoing impacts of the pandemic, it will be vital to address these challenges and ensure that all residents have access to the healthcare services they need.

Applying for Medicaid

For residents of Nassau County, understanding the process of applying for Medicaid is essential. This section will examine the application process, documentation required, and local resources available for assistance.

Application Process

The Medicaid application process in Nassau County involves submitting required documentation through various methods, including online, by mail, in person, or through a Facilitated Enroller, to determine eligibility for the program. With the implementation of the Affordable Care Act in 2014, applicants in the Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) category must apply through the New York State of Health by calling 1-855-355-5777.

Eligibility for Medicaid in Nassau County is based on various factors, such as income, assets, age, disability, and citizenship status. Different Medicaid programs, including Medicaid for the aged, blind, and disabled, Medicaid for adults, and Medicaid for children, have different requirements.

Required Documentation

Applicants are required to submit certain documentation to establish their eligibility for Medicaid. These include proof of identity, income, resources, and citizenship. It's crucial to provide accurate and complete information to ensure that the application process runs smoothly and to avoid any delays in securing coverage.

Required Documentation Description
Proof of Identity Driver's license, passport, or any other government-issued identification
Proof of Income Pay stubs, tax returns, or letters from employers
Proof of Resources Bank statements, property deeds, or investment statements
Proof of Citizenship Birth certificate, passport, or citizenship certificate

Information courtesy of FreedomCare

Local Resources for Assistance

For those who need additional assistance or have questions about Medicaid in Nassau County, there are several local resources available. The Nassau County Department of Social Services and enrollment specialists can provide guidance and support in navigating the Medicaid system. These resources can be particularly helpful for individuals who are applying for Medicaid for the first time or those who need help understanding the eligibility requirements.

In addition, the Nassau County Department of Health (NCDOH) plays a critical role in overseeing and coordinating services for Medicaid beneficiaries, ensuring access to healthcare and social services for those in need.

With the right resources and understanding of the process, applying for Medicaid in Nassau County can be a straightforward process. It's crucial to remember that help is available for those who need it, whether through local agencies, online resources, or phone support.

Demographics of Medicaid Recipients

In understanding the landscape of Medicaid in Nassau County, it's vital to consider the demographics of the recipients of this public health coverage program. This section will discuss the representation of minority populations within Medicaid and the role played by the Nassau County Department of Health (NCDOH) in managing these services.

Medicaid and Minority Populations

Despite the Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), healthcare access issues persist in Nassau County. These issues are particularly prevalent among minority populations and those with limited English proficiency. A significant portion of these communities have been identified as beneficiaries of Medicaid, highlighting the crucial role of this program in providing health coverage and addressing health disparities in these groups.

Population Group Proportion in Medicaid
Low-income adults 55%
Low-income children 35%
Elderly and disabled individuals 10%

These data, courtesy of the Nassau County Department of Health, provide an overview of the beneficiaries of Medicaid in Nassau County.

Role of Nassau County Department of Health

The Nassau County Department of Health plays a critical role in managing Medicaid within the county. The department oversees and coordinates services for Medicaid beneficiaries, ensuring access to healthcare and social services for those in need. The NCDOH plays a particularly critical role in serving low-income adults and children, as well as elderly and disabled individuals, who make up a large portion of the Medicaid recipients in Nassau County.

The NCDOH's tasks include coordinating medical services, offering resources for long-term care, and ensuring the implementation of health plans under Medicaid Managed Care. By performing these roles, the department helps to provide essential support for the health and wellbeing of Medicaid beneficiaries in Nassau County.

The demographics of Medicaid recipients and the role of the Nassau County Department of Health offer insight into the workings of Medicaid in Nassau County, forming a significant part of the broader narrative around healthcare access and equity within the county.


[1]: https://www.nassaucountyny.gov/1923/Medicaid

[2]: https://freedomcare.com/medicaid-nassau-county/

[3]: https://www.nassaucountyny.gov/1924/Medicaid-Managed-Care

[4]: https://www.osc.ny.gov/files/reports/pdf/medicaid-enrollment-growth-covid-19-and-the-future.pdf

[5]: https://www.nassaucountyny.gov/DocumentCenter/View/17688/2016-2018-NCDOH_CHA-and-CHIP-FINAL?bidId=

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