CARTERET COUNTY, NC (November 20, 2023) – As North Carolina’s expansion of Medicaid approaches, the Carteret County Department of Social Services (DSS) is gearing up for this change.
The expansion of Medicaid in North Carolina is a vital step forward and improving health care access and affordability for many individuals and families. It is anticipated to provide coverage to an estimated 600,000 North Carolinians within the first two years of expansion.
“The expansion of Medicaid will allow individuals and their families to have access to health care coverage who previously have not been able to find it,” said Jessica Adams, Director of Carteret County DSS. “There are over 14,000 individuals in Carteret County that currently receive Medicaid, and an estimated 4,000 more could be eligible. Our team looks forward to serving the citizens of our great county.”
Individuals must meet the below criteria to be eligible to receive coverage:
- Live in North Carolina
- Are ages 19-64
- Are a citizen. Some non-U.S. citizens can get health care coverage through Medicaid. To learn more, visit https://medicaid.ncdhhs.gov.
- Have a household income that is below 138% of the federal poverty level. That’s about $20,000 for a single adult or about $34,000 for a family of three.
Beginning Friday, Dec. 1, eligible individuals are encouraged to apply for Medicaid. For a streamlined process, Adams suggests using the online portal at https://epass.nc.gov/ as the quickest and most convenient application method. Alternatively, applicants can complete a paper application and submit it in person at DSS, located at 210 Craven Street, Beaufort, NC 28516. Please note that applications may take up to 45 days to process, with incomplete submissions potentially requiring additional time.
To support applicants needing computer and internet access, Carteret County DSS has collaborated with the Carteret County Public Library System. Computers are available at all county library branches for online applications. Additionally, DSS plans to install a computer kiosk in their main lobby for public use.
Recognizing the anticipated increase in applications, Adams urges the community to exercise patience. “Our team anticipates an increase of applications with the expansion of Medicaid. Consequently, wait times may be longer than usual as we work through the increase in applications,” Adams added. “DSS is committed to supporting the community during this transition and will continue to provide outreach and educational resources to help qualified residents understand the changes and access the health care services they need.”
For a printable Q&A form, visit https://www.carteretcountync.gov/2352/ePASS.
To learn more, visit https://medicaid.ncdhhs.gov/.