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  • Writer's pictureAmber Hinds

Medicaid and Medicaid Planning Defined

Medicaid is the largest payer of long-term care expenses. With long-term care expenses continuing to rise, it is important to understand what Medicaid is. Medicaid is a jointly funded, federal-state health insurance program for low income and needy people. It offers coverage to children, the aged, blind, and/or disabled and other people who are eligible to receive federally assisted income maintenance payments. Medicaid is based on federal law; states interpret and administer the federal law. Although based on federal law, Medicaid rules are different from state to state, and even county to county. Medicaid is not the same as Medicare which is a national health insurance program for individuals 65 and older.

The term "Medicaid planning" involves either spending-down or otherwise protecting a person's assets so that he or she can meet the financial criteria for Medicaid qualification.Medicaid planning can be divided into two types: pre-planning and crisis planning. Reference our blog here to learn about the differences in pre-planning and crisis planning.

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