Starting July first, Iowans who get government assistance including Medicaid healthcare coverage must show some I.D. Ann Wiebers, an administrator with the Department of Human Services, says it’s a new requirement to get aid through programs for low-income families.
They’ve always had to be a U.S. citizen or legal alien, and if they declared alien status the agency went on to make sure they were qualified to receive aid. But they were allowed to “self-declare,” simply tell what their status was, and now they have to prove it. The new requirement, passed early this year in Congress, was part of a federal deficit-reduction act.
They can prove citizenship and identity “both in one fell swoop,” she says, by showing a passport, a certificate of naturalization or of citizenship. If you don’t have one of those, it’ll take two documents — one to show proof of citizenship, the second to prove your identity. That can include combinations like your birth certificate or hospital birth record, an affidavit of citizenship and a driver’s license or DOT I.D. card, a school photo I.D. or military identification.
Wiebers says about 300-thousand Iowans currently get state assistance through the Department of Human Services. People who are getting Medicaid already have their eligibility reviewed every year. So beginning the first of July, when that annual review comes up they’ll now be required to also show their proof of ID and citizenship. It’ll also be required of people just coming into the system.
Wiebers says she doesn’t think the new requirement will bump a lot of people out of the Medicaid system, but if they can’t prove the required status she says the agency will help them work to become eligible. Surf to the Department of Human Services and click the link labeled “New Proof of Citizenship Requirements.”