Javascript is not enabled.

Javascript must be enabled to use this site. Please enable Javascript in your browser and try again.

Medicaid Coverage And Medicare Eligibility Skip to content

Medicare open enrollment begins Tuesday! Visit the AARP Medicare Resource Center for the information you need to make your best choices.

I have been receiving health care through Medicaid. Will I lose this coverage when I become eligible for Medicare?

En español | You will not lose Medicaid eligibility just because you become entitled to Medicare. As long as your income falls under the limits for Medicaid eligibility in your state, you will receive both types of coverage. More than 8 million people have both Medicare and Medicaid.

In this situation, Medicare becomes your primary insurance and settles your medical bills first; and Medicaid become secondary, paying for services that Medicare doesn’t cover and also paying most of your out-of-pocket expenses in Medicare (premiums, deductibles and copays).

When you become eligible for Medicare, you must begin receiving your prescription drug coverage from Medicare’s Part D drug program, not from Medicaid. You will automatically qualify for the federal Extra Help program, which enables you to receive Part D drug coverage without paying premiums or deductibles and paying only low copays for your drugs.  

But to get this coverage, you still have to choose a Part D drug plan and enroll in it. To ensure that you pick a plan that gives you maximum coverage at the lowest cost, you may want to contact your state health insurance assistance program (SHIP), which provides personal help from trained counselors on all Medicare and Medicaid issues — free of charge. To find the main toll-free number of your SHIP (which goes by different names in some states), go to and select your state.  

For more information on the Extra Help program, see section 2 of AARP’s consumer guide to the Part D program

Today’s Topics

    View More
    Skip Google Map Content

    In Your City

    Your City Name

    Enter address, city, state, or ZIP code.

    Hide Filter Results
    Filter Results
    Distance (in miles)

      AARP In Your State

      Visit the AARP state page for information about events, news and resources near you.