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Affordable Care Act: Key Provisions for Youth in Foster Care

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has many implications for the child welfare system.

The Center for Children and Families, Community Catalyst, and Georgetown University has created this guide to help those involved with youth from care a better understanding of the affects of the ACA.

Click on the link below to read the complete resource. The following is taken directly from this resource guide:

Summary of Key ACA Provisions of Importance to Foster Children and Youth

Medicaid coverage for former foster youth: Beginning on January 1, 2014, former foster youth will be eligible for Medicaid until they reach the age of 26, provided that they turned 18 (or older under the state’s child welfare plan) and were enrolled in Medicaid while in foster care.

Maternal, infant and early childhood home visiting programs: Federal funds will help states expand home visiting programs, which are expected to prevent child abuse and neglect, and reduce the need for foster care placement.

Health homes: Medicaid programs are encouraged to create “health homes” for children and adults with chronic health conditions (including mental health conditions and substance abuse) in order to provide coordinated and person-centered health care and social services, including many services that can be of particular benefit to foster care children and youth.

Increased flexibility to provide home and community-based services (HCBS): Since 2005, states have been able to cover HCBS as a state plan option, but few states have done so. Now, as a result of the ACA, states will have greater flexibility to cover HCBS for targeted populations such as foster care children and youth.

Power-of-attorney requirement: Foster care transition plans must include information about the importance of selecting individuals to make medical decisions on one’s behalf if one is unable to do so, and include information explaining the options for designating a health care proxy or power of attorney under the state’s law."


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Fostering Success Michigan is a statewide initiative that aims to increase access and success in higher education and post-college careers for youth with experience in foster care. Learn how you can contribute to building a holistic network that insulates (i.e., strengthens protective factors and reduces risks) the education to career "pipeline." 

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