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Assistance for Medical Expenses
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Elizabeth_WebMD_Staff posted:
Many with a diagnosis of Crohn's or Colitis are unable to work or enjoy many social or physical activities. The burden of paying medical expenses adds undue stress to an already stressful situation.

Listed below are resources to assist you with finding help for health care expenses. Take some time, research the sites, plug your information in and hopefully come up with helpful resources.

IRS - I contacted the IRS to ask if nutritional supplements for the diagnosis of crohn's and colitis were deductible. They provided the above link which explains- you cannot claim them UNLESS they are recommended by a medical practitioner as treatment for a specific medical condition diagnosed by a physician.

IRS Publication 502 lists information for covered and non-covered items, the amount allowed for deduction and something most miss, transportation to and from medical appointments.

Tip - Print out blank monthly calendars , note your doctor, dental appointments, hospital trips and pharmacy trips. Mapquest, etc., your trips to keep mileage handy so you are not constantly counting miles. Note the amounts you pay to doctors, dentists, labs, hospitals, pharmacies and attach a copy of the PAID receipt to the calendar. At the end of the month total everything up and write the total on the bottom of the calendar. This will save you time and you will not be looking for receipts during tax season.

US Department of Health & Human Services, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service - Medicaid is insurance for those who meet certain requirements for eligibility.

A program within Medicaid, Medically Needy , is available for those who earn too much to qualify for traditional Medicaid. It allows you to spend down your income by deducting medical bills. If you do not have insurance and have overwhelming medical bills check with your State Medicaid Office for eligibility. This is usually a month by month coverage.

The Medicaid website states "Even if you are not sure whether you qualify, if you or someone in your family needs health care, you should apply for Medicaid and have a qualified caseworker in your state evaluate your situation.'

To find a hospital or doctor -
Find A Health Center - find federally funded health centers even if you have no insurance. Pay what you can based on your income.

Hill-Burton Free and Reduced Cost Healthcare - Apply for free or reduced cost care at one of these 200 health care facilities. Your income must be at or below the HHS Poverty Guidelines .



Also, WebMD blogger, Lisa Zamosky, The Health Insurance Navigator , may be able to help with specific questions.
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Elizabeth_WebMD_Staff responded:

Benefits.gov - Plug in your information to see which government benefits you may be able to receive. I tried a number of different scenarios which provided a number of possible benefits.


BenefitsCheckup.org - A service of the National Council on Aging. Don't let the "aging" part discourage you. I entered info with various ages, salaries and scenarios and each time possible programs were recommended.

National Human Genome Research Institute - A great resource for information and programs available. Spend some time researching the different links provided.


For Children -
InsureKidsNow.gov - Find state specific information on Medicaid and CHIP .


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