How can I pay for or access the care my child needs?
There are services to help parents find and pay for their child’s healthcare. Private and public programs have services and ways to pay for them. Trying to deal with all the information can be a challenge, but help is available.
The State of Alaska has implemented a 211 system. It is a confidential service. When parents call, referral specialists work with them to help find what they need for healthcare and other services. Parents can also search for services online at the Alaska 211 website.
Call 211 or 800-478-2221
STAR programs (Short Term Assistance and Referral) in Alaska are entry points into the system of care for families who have children with developmental disabilities. STAR programs help families fill out paperwork and connect them with other resources. Stone Soup Group located in Anchorage is the statewide STAR program. There are also programs in other communities. The list is posted at the STAR/Mini-Grants website.
A child may have Native heritage or live in an area where the only local healthcare is funded through a Native organization. In more rural areas, these services are often offered to all local residents. A Native health organization might not have a medical specialist for epilepsy, but sometimes they have someone who helps parents find and manage different services for their child. This can be a big help.
In addition to the epilepsy and parent organizations listed previously, other local organizations may provide names of doctors who work with private insurance, Medicaid, Medicare, Denali KidCare, or the Indian Health Service. They may also know doctors who see patients at reduced rates or free of charge. The nearest hospital or one of the large hospital systems in Anchorage might also have people available to help parents find services.
Next are some descriptions of important programs for healthcare and how to pay for it.
A national resource for additional information is the Social Security and Disability Resource Center website. It has a detailed overview of how the federal disability system works (social security disability and SSI) and provides hard to find answers to typical questions. The author of the site is a former disability-Medicaid caseworker, and a former disability examiner for the Social Security Administration.