What Does Medicaid Pay For?


Quick Answer

Medicaid has both mandatory and optional government-subsidized services, according to its official website. An example of a mandatory benefit is an inpatient hospital stay, while clinic services would be an optional benefit. Each state has the ability to determine which optional benefits it covers.

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Full Answer

As of 2015, the official Medicaid website lists both inpatient and outpatient hospital services, home health services, and services in a skilled nursing facility as mandatory benefits. Other examples of mandatory benefits include home health care, physician services, labs and X-rays, and family planning. Early and periodic screening, diagnostic and treatment services are also mandatory benefits. Medicaid also covers transportation to medical facilities.

Optional benefits can include hospice care, coverage for prescription drugs and dental services. Eyeglasses, dentures, prosthetics and case-management services are also optional benefits. The official Medicaid website also lists speciality service providers such as physical or occupational therapists, speech therapists, podiatrists, and optometrists as optional. Additional examples of optional benefits include chiropractic care, private-duty nursing services, dental services, personal care and some diagnostic or preventative services.

Individuals interested in the specific Medicaid coverage for their state can use the State Medicaid & CHIP Profiles tool on the official Medicaid website to find contact information for local agencies or information on state coverage.

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