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Medical Care for Hurricane Maria Survivors

Last Modified: 02/05/2020

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Hurricane Maria evacuees in Florida may be able to find healthcare.

In Florida, Medicaid provides medical coverage for low-income people and families, including people who evacuate to Florida because of Hurricane Maria. The Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF) determines eligibility for Medicaid.


You can get Medicaid in Florida, but only if you do not plan to go back to Puerto Rico in the foreseeable future.

Be careful how you describe what you plan to do when you apply.

If you intend to return to Puerto Rico someday but you do not plan to do so in the foreseeable future, you can be considered a resident of Florida and get Medicaid. It doesn’t matter how long you are in Florida, as long as you do not have plans right now to go back to Puerto Rico in the foreseeable future.

DCF will require that you meet certain eligibility factors to receive Medicaid. Your household income cannot be too high. Medicaid is only available to low-income or low-asset resident of Florida.

Other eligibility factors include qualifying as one or more of the following:  

    • A parent or caretaker relatives of children;
    • A child;
    • A pregnant women;
    • A former foster care individual;
    • A non-citizens with medical emergencies; or
    • An aged or disabled individual not currently receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

You must also prove that you live in Florida and that you intend to stay in the state of Florida. If you do not have verification, you may provide DCF a statement called a Self-Declaration Statement as verification of your residency.


You can apply for Medicaid online at

You can also apply for Medicaid on a paper application that you can mail, fax, or walk in to your local Customer Service Center. Download the paper form here

Evacuees from Puerto Rico may be eligible to apply for Medicaid without having to go in person or stand in long lines. 

If you are denied Medicaid and are an evacuee of Hurricane Maria, contact Community Legal Services of Mid-Florida’s helpline at 1-800-405-1417 for advice and possibly assistance filing an appeal.

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