The Summit Community Care Clinic, a haven for Summit County residents without health insurance, is now accepting Medicaid for medical and dental services.
The move is to help insure people are able to keep their medical home, or make the clinic one if they so choose, according to clinic executive director Sarah Vaine.
There are many families in Summit split in terms of where they receive their medical care because a child might qualify for Medicaid, and parents do not, Vaine said. Before the clinic accepted the insurance, they had no choice but to go to two different medical offices.
"It just fragments their care a little bit," Vaine said. "Our hope for families is that they can make a choice for their medical home."
The Affordable Care Act is another factor. If the act goes through as written, a significant number of the clinic's patients will be eligible for Medicaid in 2014; with the insurance, those patients don't have to go somewhere else.
The clinic has been accepting the insurance for a few months now, but wasn't advertising it while they tried to make sure the billing, and all the other pieces, were working well, Vaine said.
Now that the word's out, Vaine said it's hard to tell how much the clinic's patient base will grow, since there are other offices in Summit that accept the insurance and patients might be comfortable where they are.
"I just think it will give a little bit more choice," she said.
The clinic is also applying to accept Medicare, and hopes to be an approved provider soon, Vaine said.