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Health Coverage News for Former Foster Youth

For youth who were in foster care, access to health services and preventative care is critical in their successful transition to adulthood. Having insurance means young adults can receive important and consistent health services even after they turn age 18.

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) allows most young adults who transitioned out of foster care at age 18 to enroll in AHCCCS health insurance (aka Medicaid) and stay enrolled until age 26, regardless of income. Starting January 1, 2014, young adults who aged out of foster care in Arizona at age 18 and who are under age 26 are most likely eligible for AHCCCS through Young Adult Transitional Insurance (YATI).

Children’s Action Alliance and our community partners know outreach efforts will be very important to ensure that eligible young adults take advantage of coverage. Former foster youth who aged out of the Arizona system after January 1, 2007 could be eligible, but may not be aware of this important benefit. There are many local and state agencies available to help individuals enroll in a health plan, please don’t hesitate to reach out for assistance. Click HERE to see a list of community partners in your county that can assist with enrollment.

Here are some details that you should know:

  • Young adults should contact the DES/Family Assistance Office at 1-855-HEA-PLUS to find their nearest office to apply in person or click HERE to check on eligibility and apply on-line. 
  • To be eligible, young adults must have been in Arizona foster care at age 18 and meet citizenship or qualified resident requirements.
  • Eligible young adults can begin to enroll now and may apply anytime before they reach age 26.
  • Once enrolled in YATI, young adults will continue to be eligible for AHCCCS health insurance through age 26 as long as they live in Arizona.
  • If a young adult is already enrolled in YATI, they do not need to take any further action; the change will occur administratively and eligibility is maintained until the young adult turns age 26.

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