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Kay Dickerson, age 57, is a Hurricane Katrina survivor. After the storm, Kay and her husband, Tom, relocated to Portland, Oregon. During her intake at the welcome center, Kay, who had long been uninsured, was diagnosed with anxiety, depression, PTSD, high blood pressure, and diabetes. She was guided to a community health center and the staff there helped her apply for the Oregon Health Plan (OHP), Oregon
Many adult Medicaid beneficiaries, like Kay, need but cannot get dental and vision care. While federal law requires that state Medicaid programs cover dental and vision services for children, states have the option to cover or omit these services for adults. Because of severe and ongoing strains on state budgets due to the recession, many states have reduced or eliminated optional Medicaid services for adults in recent years. For example, during 2010 and 2011, Oregon and nine other states cut back or terminated their adult dental benefits.
"Honestly, I don't know where I would be if I didn't have insurance."