(Media release from the Georgia Department of Human Services):
The State of Georgia will begin checking eligibility for all Medicaid and PeachCare for Kids® members once again in April with the first redetermination letters going out to members on April 17, 2023. To stay informed about their individual redetermination process and timeline, members should update their contact information in Gateway at gateway.ga.gov as soon as possible.
Before the pandemic, Medicaid and PeachCare for Kids® members were required to go through regular eligibility checks every year. Those requirements were paused due to pandemic-era protections, and more than 500,000 additional Georgians were enrolled in Medicaid and PeachCare for Kids® during the pandemic.
But in December 2022, Congress passed a federal spending bill officially requiring states to review Medicaid and PeachCare for Kids® eligibility between April 2023 and May 2024. Over the next 14 months, the Georgia Department of Human Services (DHS) will review eligibility for all members. If a member is still eligible, their coverage will be renewed. DHS will refer members who are no longer eligible for Medicaid, or who have aged out of PeachCare for Kids® to healthcare.gov or Georgia Pathways, which is expected to go live later this year, for alternative coverage options.
“If you’re a Medicaid or PeachCare for Kids® member, the most important thing you can do during the redetermination process is make sure your contact information is correct,” said DHS Commissioner Candice Broce. “We know how important it is to stay informed about your family’s coverage throughout this process, so we are making every effort to reach members and encouraging everyone to keep their information up to date.”
Georgia Medicaid members can update their information in one of three ways:
1. Online at Georgia DHS’ benefits website: gateway.ga.gov
2. In person at their local DFCS office: dfcs.georgia.gov/location
3. By phone at 1-877-GA-DHS-GO or 711 for the hearing-impaired
DHS will communicate with Medicaid and PeachCare for Kids® members via U.S. mail or email, depending on a member’s selected preference.
Last fall, DHS and the Georgia Department of Community Health launched their statewide public information campaign, “Stay Informed. Stay Covered.” to encourage members to stay in charge of their coverage. The campaign includes TV and radio ads, traditional and social media outreach, billboards, community partnerships, in-person events, and more. The campaign will continue to focus on providing critical information while helping members navigate the Medicaid redetermination process.
DHS has been aggressively hiring and training new staff and retraining existing staff to work on Medicaid redeterminations. The Amended Fiscal Year 2023 budget, signed in March by Governor Kemp, supported 450 case manager positions for the team specifically charged with handling Medicaid renewals statewide. DHS is also improving its technology services through the installation of self-service kiosks in over 400 public library locations to ensure those in underserved areas have internet access, and is working with Georgia Tech to improve call center operations to serve more customers faster and more efficiently.
Medicaid is one of many benefits programs that the state offers to assist families and seniors who are economically disadvantaged and people who have disabilities. While eligibility criteria for Medicaid/PeachCare for Kids® may be similar to other benefits programs, determining eligibility for Medicaid is a unique process. A person’s eligibility or denial of benefits for one social assistance program does not guarantee eligibility or denial for another.
For more information, visit: staycovered.ga.gov.