h/t to Michael at Corr Sent..
The only problem with this is that if you weren't on Medicaid prior to incarceration you won't be on it when you get out. Colorado recently passed a law that mandates that case managers have to get the Medicaid and SSI paper work started for folks months in advance of their release. It was mandated once before and a state audit last was released last January showed that only one out of 30 prisons in the state were following the law. So we'll see if it's one of those "it looks good on paper, but....."
When Rufus Dantzler was released from a New York State prison in 2004 after serving 14 years for murder, he was ordered by the state’s parole office to get treatment for alcoholism and marijuana abuse.
But when he arrived at the program, which was run by Greenwich House, a nonprofit group in Manhattan, he was told that he would have to pay for treatment because his Medicaid coverage had not yet started.
Without a job, that was simply not an option, said Mr. Dantzler, who was convicted of killing a family friend in Harlem in 1989. “I just walked right out,” he said.
Because Medicaid, which provides health care to people of limited means, does not cover anyone in jail or prison, inmates like Mr. Dantzler who were enrolled before their incarceration had to reapply after their release, a process that took as long as three months.
That gap left many former prisoners with no choice but to forgo medical care, even in cases of serious illnesses or addiction. Officials are concerned that without help, former inmates addicted to drugs or alcohol could return to behavior that could land them back in jail.
But after months of lobbying by the Bloomberg administration and criminal justice advocates, the State Legislature passed a bill signed by Gov. Eliot Spitzer last week that eliminates the wait. It allows prisoners in New York to suspend their Medicaid coverage while incarcerated, then have it immediately reinstated once they are released.
“A person who is receiving Medicaid on the day they get arrested is no less in need of Medicaid the day they get out,” said Martin F. Horn, the commissioner of the city’s Department of Correction.NY Times