How to Qualify for California Medi-Cal

by Laurie Rappeport ; Updated October 25, 2017

In California, qualifying low-income earners can obtain Medi-Cal coverage. Medi-Cal, California's Medicaid program, operates with both federal and state financing. Medi-Cal provides low-income families and individuals with needed health care services. Eligible recipients of Medi-Cal coverage include families and individuals with varying degrees of disability and need. Medi-Cal takes temporary emergency situations into account as well when deciding on qualification for the Medi-Cal program. Before you apply for Medi-Cal, you should ascertain whether you quality for inclusion in the program and, if so, what steps you must take to acquire Medi-Cal coverage.

Step 1

Provide proof that you receive benefits through Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), foster care or adoption assistance, In-Home Supportive Services, refugee assistance, Social Security or Supplemental Security Income. Individuals who receive benefits through these services qualify for Medi-Cal coverage.

Step 2

Apply for Medi-Cal if you have reached the age of 65, if you are blind, pregnant or disabled, if you have not yet reached the age of 21, if you have a refugee status (depending on how long you have lived in the United States) or if you reside in a skilled intermediate care or nursing home.

Step 3

Qualify for Medi-Cal if you care for a child under the age of 21 who has a deceased parent, a parent with a breast or cervical cancer diagnosis, an incapacitated parent, an unemployed/underemployed parent or a non-custodial parent.

Step 4

Fill out the Medi-Cal application after you have affirmed your qualification for acceptance into the program.

Step 5

Submit your application to one of California’s 58 public social services agencies that reviews application requests for acceptance into the Medi-Cal program.

Step 6

Contact the Medi-Cal Eligibility Division if you need assistance with coordination, clarification or implementation of your Medi-Cal services. You can contact the Eligibility Division if you have any questions or concerns about your qualification to receive Medi-Cal or if one of the social service agencies turned you down incorrectly.

About the Author

Laurie Rappeport is a writer and blogger with more than 10 years of experience. Her areas of expertise are in education, child development, travel, pets, nutrition and health for Demand Studios and a major travel website. Rappeport holds a Master of Arts degree from Wayne State University.

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