Indiana, its time for a change!
Change the way Medicaid figures Medicaid spend downs for the disabled.
I recently received Indiana Medicaid for theDisabled and am expected to pay $474 per month as my "spend down." This spend down is directly related to my income and disregards any bills I have to pay. medicaid spend downs should be eliminated for the disabled in Indiana. The cost of health care for the disabled should be covered by all states without a costly spend down.
Doctors' visits, medication costs and other related health care costs hardly meet a monthly spend down for most people. Disabled people who receive SSDI, even if they receive additional income who pay living expenses cannot afford to pay a large spend down. In my case, I receive $734 per month from Social Security Disability and an additional $400 per month in spousal maintenance. My rent is $550 and utility bills run about $260 per month. This is over $800 in living expenses, which leaves me very little money to purchase the necessary items for living, including gasoline for my car to drive to school and car insurance.
The Medicaid spend down will leave people in debt with health care facilities. How it works is one visits a doctor and gets billed for the visit; laboratory work is also billed to Medicaid. Anything under the proscribed spend down is the patient's responsibility. However, with the limited income people on disability have, it is nearly impossible to pay the health care providers when the bill comes.
People in Indiana and other states where people who receive Medicaid for the Disabled need to have their voices heard. This is unfair to us! The rules for income-based Medicaid need to be changed and take into account other living expenses, which is what happens when someone applies for other Federally-funded programs, such as Food Stamp benefits.
Please help the disabled by helping us to get legislation that changes the spend down rules for Medicaid.
Cheryl J. Leslie, on behalf of struggling SSI recipients
Medicaid spend downs based on income are wholly unaffordable for SSDI recipients, especially when they have to meet day-to-day living expenses.
My spend down is $474 per month, which makes the use of Medicaid for me unrealistic. After paying over $800 in monthly living expenses, I hardly have enough money to purchase the necessities, much less pay an outrageous spend down as required by Indiana Medicaid rules. At $474 per month, if I did have this kind of money, I could almost afford to purchase private health insurance--but I cannot afford it at any rate.
I realize that Governor Daniels wishes to reduce state spending, but it is being done at the risk of disabled people's health. Please change the rules about Medicaid for the disabled being based solely on income so people can afford to take care of their health.
Cheryl J. Leslie