Exploring Government Benefits, Waivers, and More

Quick Overview

This session explored government benefits, waivers, and more for individuals with Angelman Syndrome. The speaker discussed Medicaid waivers, eligibility requirements, and the levels of support available. They also touched on the importance of planning for the future, including the use of ABLE accounts and the potential impact of Medicaid on estate planning. The session emphasized the need for advocacy and provided resources for families to navigate the complex world of government benefits.

Good evening! I’m thrilled to be here with you tonight for the ASF Virtualpalooza. Tonight’s session is one that I’ve been eagerly anticipating, as we delve into the world of government benefits, waivers, and everything that goes along with it. We are fortunate to have a knowledgeable speaker tonight who will guide us through this complex topic. But before we begin, as promised, I want to showcase another t-shirt from the Angelman Syndrome community. Tonight, I’m wearing my “This Person Loves Someone with Angelman Syndrome” shirt. I received this shirt a while ago and I absolutely love it. If you happen to know the designer, please let us know so others can enjoy it too. And remember, if this is your first night with us, welcome! As a token of our appreciation, we will be sending you an ASF Virtualpalooza t-shirt in the next couple of weeks. Now, let’s dive into the topic at hand.

Medicaid and Waivers

Medicaid is a crucial program that provides health insurance to individuals and families with low income. It is a joint federal and state program, with the federal government providing 80% of the funding and states contributing the remaining 20%. Each state has its own Medicaid program, and eligibility requirements may vary. However, individuals with Angelman Syndrome often qualify for Medicaid waivers, which are state-specific programs that provide additional support and services beyond traditional Medicaid coverage.

Levels of Waivers and Waiting Lists

Medicaid waivers are divided into different levels, each offering varying levels of support. It is important to understand the hierarchy of these levels and get on the waiting list as soon as possible. The higher the level, the more comprehensive the services and supports provided. However, it is worth noting that waiting lists for higher-level waivers can be long, sometimes spanning several years. Therefore, it is crucial to get on the waiting list as early as possible to ensure timely access to services.

EPSDT and HIP Programs

EPSDT (Early Periodic Screening Diagnostic Treatment) is a Medicaid program that provides comprehensive healthcare services for children under the age of 21. It covers a wide range of services, including preventive care, diagnostic tests, and treatment. EPSDT is designed to prevent the onset or worsening of disabilities and illnesses in children.

HIP (Health Insurance Premium Payment) programs are another important aspect of Medicaid. These programs allow Medicaid recipients to receive private health insurance paid for entirely by their state’s Medicaid program. This can be particularly beneficial for families who have private insurance coverage but still need the additional support provided by Medicaid.

The ABLE Act

The ABLE Act (Achieving a Better Life Experience) is a federal law that allows individuals with disabilities to save money in tax-advantaged accounts called ABLE accounts. These accounts can hold up to $14,000 per year and are designed to help individuals with disabilities maintain their eligibility for means-tested benefits such as Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income (SSI). However, it is important to note that states have the option to recoup Medicaid expenses from ABLE accounts after the beneficiary’s passing.

Advocacy and Resources

Advocacy is a crucial aspect of navigating the world of government benefits and waivers. It is important to know your rights and be proactive in advocating for yourself or your loved one with Angelman Syndrome. There are several resources available to help you in this journey, including state-specific protection and advocacy councils, The Arc chapters, and University Centers of Excellence in Developmental Disabilities.

Remember, change is constant in the world of Medicaid, and it is important to stay informed and advocate for your needs. By understanding the available benefits, waivers, and resources, you can ensure that you and your loved ones receive the support and services you deserve.

If you have any questions or need further assistance, please reach out to the Angelman Syndrome Foundation at info@angelman.org. We are here to help you navigate the complexities of government benefits and waivers. Stay healthy and well, and we look forward to seeing you at future events.

Talk details

  • Title: Exploring Government Benefits, Waivers, and More
  • Author(s): Eric Wright
  • Author(s)’ affiliation: None
  • Publication date: 2020-08-17
  • Collection: 2020 ASF Virtualpalooza