TennCare for Youth who Aged-out

Did you age out of Foster Care in Tennessee, or are about to? Are you between the ages of 18 and 26?
If so, you may qualify for insurance through the Affordable Care Act.

Youth who aged out of foster care are able to receive TennCare coverage until they are 26-years-old under the Affordable Care Act, which went into effect January 1, 2014.

You are eligible for full insurance benefits, including:

  • Screening, prevention and early intervention services
  • Diagnostic services and treatment for physical and mental health conditions

Am I covered?

  • If you aged out, or are about to age out, of foster care, as long as you continue to live in Tennessee, you will be automatically approved for TennCare insurance in the Former Foster Care category. You may be contacted by TennCare for verifications. If you have moved from Tennessee, and returned, you will need to reapply through healthcare.gov. 
  • If you aged out of foster care before Jan. 1, 2014, and are receiving Extension of Foster Care Services you should contact your DCS case manager or TennCare to verify your status.
  • If you aged out of foster care prior to Jan. 1, 2014 and were not receiving Extension of Foster Care Services, did not reapply for TennCare, or were denied, you need to apply through the health insurance  marketplace, healthcare.gov.
  • If you left state custody as an adult who was not enrolled in TennCare, such as youth who were in a Youth Development Center, you need to apply for health insurance through the marketplace, healthcare.gov.

How do I Apply?

To apply, visit healthcare.gov. If you do not have a computer or internet access, go to a local DHS office and apply at a kiosk. 

If you think you may be eligible, call your Regional DCS office and talk to the Health Care Advocacy Representative. If you already have TennCare coverage, you can call the Tennessee Health Connection at 1-855-259-0701.

You must apply for TennCare through the Health Insurance Marketplace.  You can still use a paper application, but you also can apply online or by phone through the Health Insurance Marketplace, healthcare.gov.  Or, you can call 1-800-318-2596. After the Health Insurance Marketplace reviews your application, they’ll tell us if you are eligible for TennCare.

Call the Tennessee Health Connection toll-free at 855-259-0701 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. CST Monday to Saturday. For the Tennessee Relay Service (TNRS) call 800-848-0298, give them 855-259-0701 and choose option 4.

Need More Information?

You can call the DCS Independent Living Staff toll free, Call DCS toll free, 844-887-7277.

Read this: Understanding Health Insurance Options