Round 2,600 kids with disabilities will be capable to obtain extra meals advantages, a change state well being and human companies officers mentioned they’d been looking for federal approval of for a number of years.
The Government Workplace of Well being and Human Providers introduced Thursday that Massachusetts had acquired a green-light from the federal authorities to instantly certify sure kids with disabilities who qualify for Medicaid as a result of they obtain Supplemental Safety Revenue at no cost and reduced-price faculty meals, beginning this month.
These kids will then robotically be eligible for the Pandemic EBT program that gives emergency meals advantages to cowl the price of missed faculty meals for college kids who’re studying at the very least partially remotely. In response to the administration, Medicaid packages are allowed to supply direct certification for youngsters to qualify at no cost or lowered price-meals with out their family making use of, however a distinct set of program guidelines made Medicaid-qualifying kids who obtain SSI and reside with a grandparent or different relative caregiver ineligible for direct certification.
Patricia Baker, a senior coverage advocate on the Massachusetts Regulation Reform Institute, mentioned in a assertion that her group helped the state advocate for the coverage clarification and is able to assist implement it. “These grandparents and all of the kinship households are the true heroes right here: elevating their disabled grandkids, nieces and nephews at residence, particularly throughout the pandemic,” she mentioned. “Kinship households in Massachusetts and throughout the nation want entry to all accessible advantages to lift the subsequent technology, together with free faculty breakfast, lunch and Pandemic EBT advantages. Nobody within the Commonwealth ought to really feel meals insecure however sadly, we’re coping with file ranges of starvation because the COVID-19 disaster continues on.” The newly eligible kids who’re engaged in totally distant or hybrid studying are set to obtain their first P-EBT advantages on Feb. 25.