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Page updated Nov 23, 2015 10:58 AM

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 Changes Planned in Virginia Health Care Programs 

When the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, also referred to as Obamacare, becomes effective October 1, people will have the opportunity to use the Federal Health Insurance Marketplace to compare and shop for private health insurance plans, as well as determine their eligibility for tax credits to help pay for coverage. There will also be some changes to Virginia’s existing health care programs.

Virginia has not made a final decision regarding expanding Medicaid coverage to newly eligible groups. At this time, Virginia will not provide healthcare options through Medicaid; however, the Affordable Care Act does bring new coverage options through the Federal Health Insurance Market Place. 

Individuals who are currently covered by Medicaid/FAMIS will remain on the program with only a few exceptions resulting from a change in the method used to determine eligibility. At renewal, if a case is determined to no longer be eligible, the staff at the Department of Community and Human Services will assess and make a referral to the Federal Health Insurance Marketplace, as appropriate.

Individuals seeking healthcare coverage are encouraged to use the CommonHelp website to apply for Medicaid or FAMIS benefits. Persons can apply online via CommonHelp at Individuals may also apply via mail, fax or in person at the Department of Community and Human Services. Most applications that are ineligible for Medicaid or FMAIS will be sent to the Federal Health Insurance Marketplace.

For more information on health care coverage options in Virginia, effective October 1, visit

Effective October 1, persons can apply for Medicaid/FAMIS by calling 1.855.242.8282. This call center is solely for taking Medicaid/FAMIS applications.

Beginning October 1, individuals can learn more about the Federal Health Insurance Marketplace and receive help filling out their Federal Health Insurance Marketplace application by visiting or calling 1.800.318.2586. Individuals will also be able to see if they qualify for a subsidy to help offset the cost of the insurance.  (Spanish language website is