The federal government recently published new guidelines that will allow people to earn more money yet still qualify for some Medicaid programs.

Each year, the federal government adjusts the poverty levels to account for inflation. The change in these guidelines allow individuals and families to earn more money each month and qualify for Medicaid benefits. For more complete income guidelines, visit the Medicaid Web site at

Some Medicaid programs, including the Louisiana Children’s Health Insurance Program, the Medicare Savings Program (helps seniors and individuals with disabilities pay Medicare Part-B premiums) and LaMOMS (provides health coverage and delivery services for pregnant women) determine eligibility based on a person’s of family’s annual income. An upward revision in these guidelines enables more people to qualify.

LDH Secretary David W. Hood said that a minor cost-of-living adjustment of about $50 a month can mean much to families who live on a tight budget. "Therefore, individuals and families who were once determined ineligible because of too high an income should reapply," Hood said.

Below is more information about these programs and the types of families that are now eligible for these services:

LaCHIP is a health insurance program designed to bring health care to uninsured children and youth up to the age of 19 in Louisiana. A family of four can now earn about $36,800 a year and get health insurance for their children with no enrollment fees, no premiums, no co-payments and no deductibles.

LaMOMS makes proper prenatal care available to more pregnant women. Since January of this year, 948 women have become eligible for coverage. With the recent income change, a family of three, including the couple and their unborn child, can earn about $30,000 a year and still qualify for services.

Medicare Savings Program helps low income seniors and people with disabilities who don’t qualify for full Medicaid benefits pay their Medicare premiums and co-payments. Those who qualify can save $704 in Medicare premiums alone each year. A couple with limited financial resources earning $16,400 a year or less would be eligible for premium assistance through MSP.