When will my Medicaid benefits start?


After finding out you qualify for Medicaid, your benefits will start right away. Your benefits may also be backdated to the first day of the month you applied. If you applied for long term care Medicaid or other special programs, your benefits start the day you meet all the requirements.

To make an appointment with a health care provider, you will need your Medicaid number. Your Medicaid number can be found on your Medicaid card. It is important you have your Medicaid card with you each time you make an appointment with your health care provider and every time you go to your health care provider’s office.

To find out how to get your Medicaid card, click here. A hard copy of your Medicaid card should arrive in 7-10 days. Your card will be sent to the address on your application.

It is important to know that it may take a few extra days once you are enrolled for your health care provider to confirm in their system you are enrolled in Medicaid. If you have questions about your coverage or benefits please call the Medicaid Customer Contact Center at 1-800-221-3943/ TDD 1-800-659-2656. Hours: Monday-Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. (closed state holidays).

If you are not feeling well but are not sure if you need to go to the doctor, call the Nurse Advice Line at 800-283-3221. This hotline is just for Medicaid clients and you can call it 24-hours a day.

In an emergency, you should get care from the closest hospital that can help you. The law requires providers to examine you to determine if your medical condition is life threatening and provide you with medical care until your life is no longer in danger.

If you need to fill a prescription and have not received your Medicaid card yet, check to see if your pharmacy accepts Medicaid. If they do, provide your Medicaid number and prescription (or refill) to the pharmacy. They will try to fill it using the information you gave them. If they do not have enough information, pharmacies can give you enough medicine for 3 days. If your pharmacy does not accept Medicaid call the Medicaid Customer Contact Center at 1-800-221-3943/ TDD 1-800-659-2656. Hours: Monday-Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. (closed state holidays).