Finding Medical Coverage

First Step:

Can you get private health insurance coverage from your employer? Are you able to remain on your parent’s insurance?

  • Parents are permitted to keep their children on their insurance until the child becomes 26 (even if the child’s work place offers insurance).

Second Step:

If you have recently changed jobs, does your previous employer offer COBRA?

  • Check with the human resources office of your previous employer to find out.

Third Step:

Are you eligible for public medical coverage? Find out by calling 211 or visiting

  • Medicaid (you are eligible up to the age of 19)
  • Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) (eligibility requirement; and up to age 18)
  • Children with Special Health Care Needs (CSHCN) (eligibility requirement; and up to age 21)
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI) any age if you meet criteria
  • Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) only available if you have worked and paid taxes
  • Harris Health System (HHS)

Fourth Step:

Use the Health Insurance Marketplace by visiting to find out which benefit options you can qualify for.

  • Contact private health insurance companies to see if they will insure you and if so, what the coverage and premiums will be.
    • Ask about hospital only or major medical only coverage if either of these options would work for you.
  • Contact Gateway to Care for assistance locating insurance.
  • Look online by typing in the following words, the name of the county you live in and the word “indigent care”.
    • This will help you locate a program like the Harris Health System in Harris County. Some counties do not provide an indigent care program.

Fifth Step:

Contact some diseases have grants or supports to cover specific services for those who are uninsured, such as an MRI.

  • They also list additional resources by disease and they provide significant assistance with medication for those without insurance.

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