All states, including Kansas, are responsible for creating and implementing a statewide Medicaid program. These programs determine the types of benefits will be available through the program, in what amounts and for how long, in accordance with federal guidelines. Specifically some types of benefits in general must be included in a state’s Medicaid program, while others are optional.

What benefits are mandatory? First of all, inpatient and outpatient hospital services must be included. Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic, and Treatment Services (EPSDT) are also mandatory. Other mandatory benefits include those for x-ray and laboratory services, home health care and physician services. Both federally qualified health center services and rural health clinic services are also mandatory. Transportation needed to receive medical care is also a mandatory benefit. There are other mandatory benefits that must be included in a state’s Medicaid program as well.

What benefits are optional? Prescription drug coverage is optional. Certain therapies, such as occupational and physical therapy are optional. Clinic services, chiropractic services, podiatry services, dental services and optometry services are also optional. Services related to language, the ability to hear and the ability to speak are optional. In addition, coverage of aids such as eyeglasses, prosthetics and dentures is also optional. Hospice care is another optional benefit, as is private duty nursing services. There are other optional benefits that states may decide whether or not to provide as well.

Medicaid planning is important for many senior citizens in Kansas City. Residents may have many questions regarding what types of benefits are available in the state’s Medicaid program. This post cannot provide any guarantees as to what types of benefits will be available to readers. Fortunately, Kansas City elder law attorneys are available to answer these questions and more.

Source: Medicaid.gov, “Benefits,” accessed Sept. 6, 2015

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