New N.D. Human Services team to help families with Medicaid long-term care eligibility

Posted on 06/10/20

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At an average cost of $9,215 per month for care, skilled nursing care is expensive. The North Dakota Medicaid program helps qualifying individuals pay for the cost of long-term care services in both nursing homes and in individuals’ own homes and other community settings.

Applying for Medicaid long-term care assistance is now easier. The North Dakota Department of Human Services has formed an expert team focused on Medicaid long-term care eligibility. The specialized unit includes 16 experienced eligibility workers who live and work in counties across the state.

These state employees are available to provide accurate information weekdays between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. local time. They focus exclusively on assisting individuals who are applying for Medicaid long-term care in skilled nursing homes, memory care facilities, and swing-bed and basic care facilities, and for some Medicaid in-home and community-based services.

Who North Dakotans should call
The Medicaid Long-Term Care Eligibility Unit experts are one call away at 701-328-1180, toll-free 833-755-0235, 711 (TTY) and can also be reached by email at dhsmedicaidltc@nd.gov. North Dakotans who need Medicaid long-term care assistance should contact the unit.

The unit grew out of a pilot project that is part of North Dakota’s social service redesign effort. Redesigning social services includes using specialists, when appropriate, to provide services more efficiently and effectively to state residents.

“Medicaid long-term care eligibility is complex. We now have an experienced, dedicated team working to provide all North Dakotans, no matter where they live, with accurate and timely help applying for Medicaid for their long-term care,” said DHS Chief Operating Officer Sara Stolt who has been working with the human service zones, formerly called county social service offices, to implement the pilot and resulting specialized unit.

“Contacting the new Medicaid Long-Term Care Eligibility Unit directly will speed up the application process,” Stolt said. “However, if desired, local zone offices can also help individuals fill out the long-term care application and can scan and send required documents to the new specialized long-term eligibility unit.”

Stolt said nursing homes and other long-term care service providers should also call the new Medicaid Long-Term Care Eligibility Unit to confirm the status of residents’ Medicaid applications. Billing questions should continue to be directed to the Medicaid Call Center toll-free at 877-328-7098 or email mmisinfo@nd.gov.

North Dakota has between 4,500-5,000 Medicaid long-term care cases. The cases will be managed jointly by the human service zones and the Medicaid Long-Term Care Eligibility Unit. While some cases are touched by an eligibility worker once a year, the new specialty unit will work directly with individuals and families during the application process, will determine eligibility and will manage some cases on an ongoing basis.

This story is provided by AARP North Dakota. Visit the AARP North Dakota page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.

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