Research Fellow Amy Dworsky Coauthors NCCP Policy Brief
Chapin Hall Research Fellow Amy Dworsky coauthored a recently released policy brief, “Fostering Health: The Affordable Care Act, Medicaid, and Youth Transitioning from Foster Care.” The brief was published by the National Center for Children in Poverty. It describes the health care needs of former foster youth and the barriers they face to accessing health care. It also makes policy and practice recommendations to eliminate those barriers such as informing youth about their healthcare eligibility and streamlining the application process.
The Affordable Care Act contains a provision mandating health insurance coverage of former foster youth until age 26 (via Medicaid). However, due to concerns about the potential cost, only 13 states have made Medicaid coverage available to all former foster youth regardless of the state in which they resided when they aged out. As the authors point out, denying Medicaid coverage to youth who aged out in other states may cost more in the long run as former foster youth incur higher costs for emergency care than they would have incurred for standard or preventive care.