Throughout all of South Carolina, thousands of seniors rely on Medicaid to help them get the health care they need. Many use coverage to pay for nursing home stays, regular doctor’s trips, prescription medication, and lab work. Seniors can also gain access to adult day care services, long-term care facilities, and even hospice care through Medicaid benefits. If you think you might qualify for Medicaid, then you need to know about all the resources available to you in Charleston.
There are a few requirements that you need to meet to get Medicaid benefits that include age, income, and any possible disabilities. If you’re a senior, you need to be at least 65 years old, blind, disabled or require treatment that will last at least 30 days. Your household will also have to meet a certain income level and other than your house and car, you can’t own any significant assets. You can find out more about eligibility for your age group here.
There are a couple of different ways that you can apply for your Medicaid benefits. If you have access to a computer, then the quickest way is going to be online. You can head to the South Carolina Healthy Connections portal and complete your application process there. You can also apply online at healthcare.gov. If you have any troubles with your online application, SC Thrive is an online resource that can assist you with your application.
If you would prefer to meet in person for your application or you have a lot of questions you need to ask face to face, there are a few places you can go. There are two Medicaid offices located in Charleston County, and both can help you with your application. They are located at:
3366 Rivers Avenue (843) 740-5900
326 Calhoun Street (843) 740-5900
You can also go to any federally qualified rural health center or hospital to apply for benefits. If you can’t make it to any of these locations, you can call the main helpline at (888) 549-0820. They can answer your questions and send you an application to fill out and mail back to them.
If you don’t have a computer or internet access but still want to apply online, you can go to any one of the Charleston County Public Library branches. They have free computers and Wi-Fi, but printing costs $.10 per page.
For most seniors, Medicaid coverage will include doctor’s appointments, trips to the dentist, outpatient services, hospital or nursing home stays, lab work, and x-rays. You can also get help with services such as in-home health care, adult day care services, medical supplies, rehabilitation services, and hospice care when needed. Coverage can vary slightly in each state so once you get your benefits, make sure you know everything included.
You also need to make sure that you only use providers that accept Medicaid. South Carolina Medicaid has a current database of all the providers in the state that accept Medicaid, and you can always ask your provider if they take your benefits.
If you have an appointment but lack a way to get there, South Carolina Medicaid can help. They offer transportation to any non-emergency medical appointment in your area. Charleston seniors should call (866) 445-9954 to arrange your ride. You need to arrange your ride at least three days before your appointment and if you have to cancel, you need to give at least 24-hours notice.
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