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Senator Garcia, District 37 — Press Release


March 9, 2021

CONTACT: Kim Bertron, (850) 487-5037

Legislation by Senator Ileana Garcia to Ensure Medicaid Coverage for Former Foster Youth Advances

Gaining unanimous support in the Children, Families and Elder Affairs Committee, Senate Bill 1526 will assist former foster young adults in maintaining their Medicaid coverage.

Tallahassee —

The Senate Committee on Children, Families and Elder Affairs today unanimously approved Senate Bill 1526, by Senator Ileana Garcia (R-Miami), to help ensure young adults who have aged out of foster care continue to be provided coverage in Medicaid until age 26.  


Senate Bill 1526 directs the Department of Children and Families (DCF), in conjunction with community-based care lead agencies, to develop a program and conduct outreach in order to connect with all eligible young adults and facilitate their continued enrollment in Medicaid from 18 to 26 years of age.


“This issue became very visible during the pandemic where many were left with no home to return to or few options to receive the help they needed,” said Senator Garcia. “Former foster care youth are unsung heroes, their lessons are harder than most. I will continue to work to improve the protocols necessary to make sure that future generations do not spend the better part of their adult life recovering from a tough childhood.”


Currently, Florida requires young adults who have aged out of foster care to apply for Medicaid entitled continuing coverage and to re-apply or recertify each year through the maximum age of 26. Young people are often not aware of their eligibility and have no insurance. Others may not be able to jump through the administrative hoops and will lose coverage.


“We want to make sure we locate and support the 18 to 26 year old former foster care age group during this time of transition,” said Senator Garcia.


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