How to Apply for Emergency Medi-Cal

How to Apply for Emergency Medi-Cal
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California residents in need of free or inexpensive health insurance may qualify for Medi-Cal. This state-funded health insurance has both income and asset limits that determine eligibility. If an emergency arises, you have several options for streamlining the application process to receive prioritized approval for benefits. It’s also possible to receive temporary approval of benefits to enable you to receive needed medical care quickly, says the Stanislaus County, California, website.

Know Your Legal Status

Although you don’t have to be a U.S. citizen for Medi-Cal eligibility, you must have legal immigration status to apply. Without legal immigration status, your entitlement reduces to emergency and pregnancy-related services, and in some cases state-funded long-term care, says the California Department of Health Care Services.

Seek Emergency Treatment First

Go to an emergency room or an urgent care clinic if you are experiencing a medical emergency. The clinic or hospital will provide you with the medical care you require, and the billing department will help you apply for emergency Medi-Cal benefits.

Gather the Necessary Documents

You'll need to provide income verification, Social Security number, bank statements, life insurance policies, vehicle registrations, property tax statements, pregnancy verification, naturalization documents, proof of citizenship and naturalization documents, burial trust documentation, and investment documents proving ownership of stocks, bonds, mutual funds, annuities and/or IRAs when you apply. It will save time if you gather these documents ahead of time, as well as reduce the chances that your application is put on hold because you didn't have all of the information needed.

Fill Out the Medi-Cal Application

Access the Medi-Cal application by visiting the State of California Department of Health Care Services website and download the application. Fill it out online and print it, or print it and then fill it out in pen. The application includes your name and mailing address, information about adults and children in your household, income and asset information, monthly expense information, other coverage information, citizenship information, military service, school attendance, information release option and signatures. If you have trouble completing any portions of the application, leave the problematic areas blank and get assistance from a case manager.

Turn in the Medi-Cal Application

Visit your county social services office with the completed application to apply in person. Applying for emergency benefits in person enables a case manager to assess your situation personally and make a decision more quickly. Explain your personal situation and why it necessitates accelerated approval.