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About Florida Medicaid

For detailed information about the Medicaid program itself, including eligibility criteria, coverage, policies, and providers, click here.

Medicaid is managed by the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration, known as AHCA. AHCA's website provides useful information about the program and its history, scope, and services.

"Medicaid is the state and federal partnership that provides health coverage for selected categories of people with low incomes. Its purpose is to improve the health of people who might otherwise go without medical care for themselves and their children. Medicaid is different in every state.

Florida implemented the Medicaid program on January 1, 1970, to provide medical services to indigent people. Over the years, the Florida Legislature has authorized Medicaid reimbursement for additional services. A major expansion occurred in 1989, when the United States Congress mandated that states provide all Medicaid services allowable under the Social Security Act to children under the age of 21."

People often confuse Medicaid with Medicare

"Medicare is a federal health insurance program for people who are age 65 or older or disabled. It is administered by the federal Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Eligibility for Medicare is not based on the person's income or assets."

Currently, in the state of Florida, Medicaid is undergoing reform.

"Under Medicaid Reform, the state's role will change so that it is largely a purchaser of care, and oversight will focus on improving access and increasing quality of care. Individuals will have the ability to select plans that meet their needs.

The state will increase the number of individuals enrolled in comprehensive plans that are capable of managing all of an individual's care. In addition, the state will allow flexibility to plans to structure benefit packages to better serve individuals - while ensuring that benefits offered are actuarially comparable to the needs of the population. The state is seeking to increase the number of individuals in a capitated or premium based managed care program and reduce the number of individuals in a fee-for-service program."

Source: AHCA web site

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This page was last updated Nov. 10, 2008.