Maryland Medical Assistance offers several programs for women who have a low income, limited or no health insurance and cannot receive regular Medicaid. Included in Medical Assistance is the family planning benefit, however, if you do not qualify for full MMA, you may still be able to receive these services. Additionally, the state has a Breast and Cervical Cancer Program (BCCP) for the screening and diagnosis of such conditions. Those who have showed negative results through a BCCP test can receive coverage on treatment and follow-up services through the Women’s Breast and Cervical Cancer Health Program (WBCCHP).
Each program has separate eligibility requirements for Maryland women according to age and income. WBCCHP is only for those who have been diagnosed with breast or cervical cancer, yet any woman who meets the age and income criteria may receive BCCP services if she is at risk and needs to be screened. Family Planning has a wider range of eligibility, as such services are needed by a much higher percentage of women.
Family Planning Program
Less than one year old, the Family Planning Program is a welcome addition to Maryland Medical Assistance coverage. The Family Planning Program covers an array of birth control methods received through visits to a doctor, nurse practitioner, nurse midwife, or clinic. Benefits covered by the Family Planning Program include the following:
- Consultation and advice on birth control methods
- Physical exams: includes pelvic and breast exam
- Screenings: includes pap tests and sexually transmitted infections as part of a family planning visit
- Birth control pills and devices
- Emergency contraception
- Permanent sterilization (for those age 21 and over)
Abortion and infertility treatments are not covered by the Family Planning Program.
To qualify for coverage through the Family Planning Program, you must be a Maryland resident, a U.S. citizen or legal immigrant, and under 51 years of age. You must also have income that does not exceed the guidelines below. Eligible women can have income up to 200 percent of the current Federal Poverty Level. Each applicant’s income is based on the number of individuals living in her household.
Family of 1: $1,861 monthly, $22,340 annually
Family of 2: $2,521 monthly, $30,260 annually
Family of 3: $3,181 monthly, $38,180 annually
Family of4: $3,841 monthly, $46,100 annually
Family of 5: $4,501 monthly, $54,020 annually
Family of 6: $5,161 monthly, $61,940 annually
Family of 7: $5,821 monthly, $69,860 annually
Family of 8: $6,481 monthly, $77,780 annually
Women will be deemed ineligible if they are pregnant, have previously had a tubal ligation procedure, or are enrolled in another Medical Assistance Program or Medicare. After a woman with income less than or equal to 200 percent of FPL has given birth and no longer qualifies for MCHP, she is automatically enrolled in Family Planning.
How to Apply
Applications are in paper form, and must be filled out by hand and mailed in to the Department of Health & Mental Hygiene when complete. You will need to provide general personal information for yourself, your spouse, and any children living with you, as well as noting the sources and quantities of income received by you and your spouse. If you have any other health insurance, be sure to provide information on any health insurance you may have presently, and if you have any child care costs.
An application can be sent to you by calling 855-692-4993
Once completed, send your application to:
Department of Health & Mental Hygiene
Family Planning Program
P.O. Box 296
Baltimore, MD 21298-9795
Or fax to: 410-444-0134 (8:00 am – 4:30 pm M-F)
Breast & Cervical Cancer Screening Program
Each state is required to offer such a program for prevention and screenings under the National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program. Maryland provides women of a certain age without the means to access to these services, as is required by law. Covered services include all necessary clinical exams and diagnostic services. Once a woman is enrolled in BCCP, she may receive relevant diagnostic services for free to determine her risk, or the condition’s stage of development.
Covered clinical and diagnostic services include :
- Screening mammogram
- Diagnostic mammogram
- Pap smear and pelvic exam
- Clinical breast exam
- HPV testing (if appropriate)
- Cervical biopsy
- Breast ultrasound
- Surgical consult
In order to be eligible for care, you must be a Maryland resident between 40 and 64 years, or a woman over 65 without Medicare, or Medicare Part A only. The program is open to women without insurance, and you may still qualify with health insurance as long as your plan does not cover the screening procedures. If you are already enrolled in Medical Assistance, Medicare Part B, or an HMO or PPO, you will not qualify. You must also meet the income guidelines, which are less than or equal to 250 percent of the Federal Poverty Level, based on your family size.
Family of 1: $2,327 monthly, $27,925 yearly
Family of 2: $3,152 monthly, $37,825 yearly
Family of 3: $3,977 monthly, $47,725 yearly
Family of 4: $4,802 monthly, $57,625 yearly
Family of 5: $5,627 monthly, $67,525 yearly
Family of 6: $6,452 monthly, $77,425 yearly
Family of 7: $7,277 monthly, $87,325 yearly
Family of 8: $8,102 monthly, $97,225 yearly
How to Apply
Contact your local BCCP by calling the number listed below for the corresponding county. When you call, a representative will be able to determine if you qualify and are able to enroll in the program. Be prepared to discuss your income, health insurance, and where you live so the program can decide if you are eligible.
Women’s Breast and Cervical Cancer Health Program (WBCCHP)
If you have been screened by the BCCP and diagnosed with breast or cervical cancer, you will automatically qualify for WBCCHP. This program ensures you get the coverage you need throughout any necessary tests and treatments to get you well once you have been determined to have either condition. The same eligibility criteria as BCCP applies to this program, and there are no additional income or asset limits as long as a woman has met all of the other criteria.
Contact the Family Planning Program
1. Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. “Family Planning Program”. http://mmcp.dhmh.maryland.gov/familyplanning/SitePages/Home.aspx.
2. Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. “Breast and Cervical Cancer Program”. http://fha.dhmh.maryland.gov/cancer/SitePages/bccp_home.aspx