Medicaid is a service that is jointly funded by states and the federal government. Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) provide health coverage for low-income children, families, seniors and people with disabilities.

The programs cover half of all children in the state and help provide care for two-thirds of people in nursing homes. In Texas, all CHIP services and most Medicaid services are delivered through managed care health plans under contract with the state.

Types of Medicaid Programs

There are five Medicaid programs in Texas: State of Texas Access Reform (STAR), STAR Kids, STAR+PLUS, STAR Health, and traditional Medicaid. The type of Medicaid coverage a person is eligible for depends on where the person lives and their personal health issues.

Traditional Medicaid

Traditional Medicaid is also called Fee-for-Service (FFS). This service is for those who are not yet enrolled in managed care.
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Most people who have Medicaid in Texas get their coverage through the STAR managed care program. This includes children, newborns, pregnant women, and some families and children. People enrolled in STAR get their services through health plans, also called managed care plans. See how well some STAR health plans perform by looking at the STAR health plan report cards. You can find more information about income requirements and other aspects of the STAR program here.


STAR Kids is a Medicaid program for children and adults 20 or younger with disabilities. Under STAR Kids, you will get basic medical and long-term services and supports through the health plan’s provider network. If you are eligible, you may also receive Medically Dependent Children Program (MDCP) waiver services through the health plan’s provider network.


Medicaid program for individuals age 65 and older (including those dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid), adults with a disability, and women with breast or cervical cancer. People in STAR+PLUS get Medicaid basic medical services and long-term services through a health plan, also called a managed care plan. See how well some STAR+PLUS health plans perform by looking at the STAR+PLUS health plan report cards.

STAR Health

Medicaid for children who get Medicaid coverage through the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services. STAR Health also is for young adults who were previously in foster care and have either: Former Foster Care Children’s Medicaid or Medicaid for Transitioning Youth. Young adults who are in the Former Foster Care in Higher Education program also get services through STAR Health.

Learn More about Medicaid

You can learn more about and apply for Medicaid by going to

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