Under the Affordable Care Act, former foster care youth are eligible for free health care. The program requires states to provide youth under 26 with free health care if they were in foster care at the age of 18. Like normal youth that can stay on their parents’ insurance until they are 26, former foster youth can access the health care services they need.

Children Now is conducting a statewide outreach campaign to ensure all former foster youth living in California get the coverage they deserve up until the age of 26. There are no income requirements for former foster youth, ensuring they can receive coverage up to the age of 26 regardless of how much money they earn. There is also a simplified renewal process. Once youth are enrolled in the Medi-Cal former foster youth program, they can stay covered without reapplying each year.

Possibly most important, the program is flexible. Youth enrolled in the Medi-Cal program qualify for fee-for-service coverage which means they can go to any doctor, hospital or clinic that accepts Medi-Cal. Fee-for-service Medi-Cal allows former foster youth to access care from a Medi-Cal provider wherever they need it. This is critical given the population’s high mobility.

The Medi-Cal program for former foster youth includes medical, vision, dental, substance abuse and mental health coverage. youth who sign up for the free program for foster youth will be assigned the 4M aid code allowing them to receive all these benefits until the age of 26.

For more information read on at http://www.fosteryouthhelp.ca.gov/PDFs/CN_FactSheet.pdf