At the DODD Family Advisory Council meeting earlier this month, Chuck Beatty, a long-time advocate for improved employment opportunities within Ohio’s DD community, updated attendees on the Medicaid Buy-In for Workers with Disabilities (MBIWD) program. This Medicaid-funded program allows individuals with disabilities who are employed to qualify for Medicaid benefits with higher income and resource limits, and to buy into Medicaid by paying a premium based on income. The program launched in 2008.
Beatty has traveled around the state promoting the positive effect on the amount of retained income by participating in Medicaid Buy-In, and notes that, as of May 2014, there are now 9408 Ohioans with disabilities enrolled. Referring to a recent report he noted that the highest number of enrollees is in Cuyahoga County, and the lowest number is in Brown County. Beatty also added that historically, people with disabilities often were discouraged from working because their earnings made them ineligible for Medicaid coverage. MBIWD was created to enable Ohioans with disabilities to work and still keep their health care coverage.
To qualify for MBIWD, a person must:
- Be 16 to 64 years of age
- Be disabled as per the Social Security Administration or as determined by Ohio Medicaid or eligible under the MBIWD medically-improved category
- Be employed in paid work (includes part-time and full-time work)
- Pay a premium (if applicable)
- Meet certain basic requirements and financial criteria
Individuals already receiving Medicaid services who are interested in MBIWD should contact their local caseworker, or the Medicaid Consumer Hotline at 800-324-8680. A face-to-face interview is not required for this program. Individuals who are new to Medicaid can apply online at MBIWD, How to Apply.