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Massachusetts to Streamline SNAP, Health Care Applications

Senior Couple Series
Willie B. Thomas

The state is making it easier for residents to receive food assistance while applying for marketplace health insurance, in a move that could benefit hundreds of thousands of residents.

Starting in July, people who qualify for MassHealth — which combines Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for low-income residents and families — will also be asked if they’d like to apply for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, previously known as food stamps. The change will remove the need for a separate application.

State officials estimate that around 700,000 residents are enrolled in MassHealth and would likely qualify for SNAP benefits but are not currently enrolled. The streamlined application process is expected to help close that SNAP gap. Across the country, more than 8.7 million low-income households that receive SNAP benefits include at least one adult 50 or older, according to AARP research

"It is critical for older Massachusetts residents to get the SNAP benefits they deserve," says Mike Festa, state director of AARP Massachusetts.

Read more about our work in Massachusetts on our state website, or learn about our advocacy work in your state.

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