MO HealthNet Eligibility for Young People

MO HealthNet helps people with low income pay for their visits to the doctor, hospital stays, prescription drugs, medical equipment, and other medical services. Most people who get Supplemental Security Income (SSI) also qualify for MO HealthNet.

To get MO HealthNet, you have to meet certain rules. First we present the rules for young people under the age of 19, and then we present them for anybody 19 or older. Read the section that is appropriate for you.

If you work and have some earned income, you should also make sure to read about MO HealthNet Eligibility for Young People who Work.

Note: DB101 keeps track of changes to health coverage and related laws. DB101 articles and tools have recently been updated to include MO HealthNet's expansion of coverage for adults 18-64 years old (Medicaid Expansion). Get more information about applying for this coverage.

How to apply for MO HealthNet

The MO HealthNet website has instructions on how to apply for health coverage online, by phone, or by mail. If you need help completing your application, talk to a Benefits Specialist.

Note: To get benefits, some rules apply to all people, no matter what your age. You must:

  • Have or apply for a Social Security number
  • Live in Missouri and intend to remain
  • Be a United States citizen or an eligible noncitizen

MO HealthNet if You Are Younger than 19

If you are under age 19, there are ways you can qualify for MO HealthNet if your family has low to moderate income, regardless of whether or not you have a disability. Here are the three ways to qualify for MO HealthNet if you’re under 19:

  1. MO HealthNet for Kids Non-SCHIP is for children with and without disabilities whose families have the lowest income. For example, if you are 16 years old and there are four people in your family, the income limit for your family is $3,268 per month. There is no resource limit.
  2. MO HealthNet for Kids SCHIP is for uninsured children with and without disabilities whose families have more income. For example, if you are 16 years old and there are four people in your family, the income limit for your family is $6,625 per month.There is no resource limit. To get MO HealthNet for Kids SCHIP, your family will have to also pay a monthly premium if your family income is more than 150% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines ($3,313 per month for a family of four).
  3. If you do not qualify for MO HealthNet for Kids and you have a disability, you may qualify for MO HealthNet based on disability.The rules are the same as for persons age 19 or over (explained below), except that if you are under age 18, your parents’ resources are counted along with a portion of their income.

The key here is that you and your family must not be over the income limit for your family situation. Depending on the number of people in your family and your age, the income limit varies. To see the exact income limits for your family, click here. MO HealthNet may not count all of your income, so you should apply even if you think you won’t qualify. It may turn out that you do qualify. Depending on your family situation, your parents may also qualify.

If you have any questions, talk to a Benefits Specialist.

Health Coverage Income Limits for Your Family

MO HealthNet if You Are 19 or Older

If you are 19 or older, you may qualify for MO HealthNet if:

  1. Your family has low income, regardless of whether you have a disability (on DB101, this is called "income-based MO HealthNet" and you may hear it called the "Medicaid expansion"), or
  2. You have a disability and low resources and your family has low income (this way of qualifying is called "disability-based MO HealthNet").

If you have a disability, work, and earn too much for MO HealthNet, you may qualify for Ticket to Work Health Assurance instead.

Income-Based MO HealthNet

If you are 19 or older and your household's Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) is 138% of FPG or less ($17,774 per year or less if you are single), you may qualify for income-based MO HealthNet (also called "Medicaid expansion"). It doesn't matter how much your family has in resources.

Check whether your income is low enough for you to get income-based MO HealthNet:

Health Coverage Income Limits for Your Family

Learn more about income-based MO HealthNet for adults in DB101's How Health Benefits Work article.

Disability-Based MO HealthNet (and other groups)

If you are 19 or older, you can also qualify for MO HealthNet if you have low income, have low resources, and you meet at least one of the following conditions:

  • You have a disability
  • You are blind
  • You are pregnant
  • You have a child who gets MO HealthNet
  • You are over age 65
  • You are a woman being treated for breast or cervical cancer

Your income will be counted, but your parents’ income will not be counted. The exact income limit will depend on your situation, such as whether you are single or married, whether or not you have a disability, and whether or not you are blind. To get more information about eligibility and the income limits for the basic MO HealthNet program for people with disabilities, click here.

If you are blind or disabled, your resources must be below MO HealthNet’s resource limit. If you are disabled, the resource limit is $5,035 if you are single and $10,070 for couples. If you are blind, the resource limit is $5,035 if you are single and $10,070 for couples. There is no resource limit for pregnant women or low-income parents.

Note: You can open an ABLE account where over time you can save money and not have it counted as resources by MO HealthNet. Learn more about ABLE accounts.

More details about rules and eligibility for MO HealthNet Programs

MO HealthNet if You Work

If you have a disability, work, and have earned income, there’s a pretty good chance that you still qualify for MO HealthNet coverage, even if you think your income is higher than the income limit. There are three different MO HealthNet programs that can help you qualify. They are called the spend down, SSI 1619(b), and the Ticket to Work Health Assurance (TWHA) program. To read more about them, click here.

You can learn more about MO HealthNet for adults with disabilities in DB101's How Health Benefits Work article.