Our Mission
To improve the quality of life to our customers by:

  - Enhancing economic well-being
  - Strengthening families
  - Coordinating services
  - Promoting equity

Our Core Values
Respect, Responsibility and Professionalism

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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: I used to have Healthy Start, now I don't. Why not?
A: Healthy Start insurance is good for one year before you are required to reapply. This is a very simple process that can be completed over the phone by calling our Cuyahoga Benefits Application Hotline at 216-416-4440.

Q: Do I have to go into the office to apply for or receive Healthy Start?
A: If you are only applying for Healthy Start, you do not need to meet with a caseworker in an office. You can apply over the phone or online at:

Q: Do I have to live in Cuyahoga County to qualify for Healthy Start?
A: Yes. Similar coverage is available in all Ohio counties. Click here for locations: http://jfs.ohio.gov/OHP/consumers/familychild.stm

Q: Is dental coverage available when I receive Healthy Start?
A: Yes. Basic dental coverage is available for qualified participants. Healthy Start will only pay for certain dental services. Call the Medicaid Consumer Hotline at 1-800-324-8680 to ask about specific dental services that are covered.

Q: Can physically/mentally disabled children qualify for Healthy Start?
A: Yes. Disabled children can qualify for Healthy Start.

Q: Do single men qualify for Healthy Start Coverage?
  • If single men have primay custody of their children they may qualify for Healthy Start.
  • If single men do not have children or have children over the age of 19, they do not qualify for Healty Start coverage.
  • Single men may qualify for Medicaid under the Expansion. They may call the Cuyahoga Benefits Application Hotline at 216-416-4440 to apply by phone or online.
  • Single individuals can also call their local health department to ask about what health services are offered. Many local health departments offer discount programs where individuals may qualify to see a doctor and/or receive medication. See our Resources page for some of these sites.

Q: Do legal guardians need to be the biological parents of the children to receive benefits themselves?
A: No. Legal guardians do not need to be the biological parents of the child in order to apply for Healthy Start benefits for themselves or the children in their care.

Q: How can I or my organization receive information on Healthy Start?
A: Information is available on this website or at all Neighborhood Family Service Centers. If your organization requires a build quantity of brochures or information flyers, call the Office of Community Engagement at 216-987-7010 to request delivery.

Q: Can a child in foster care receive Healthy Start. If so, whose income will the income guidelines be based on?
A: Yes. A child in foster care can receive Healthy Start. The income of the foster parent(s) must be written down on the application, but will not be used in determining whether or not the foster child qualifies for Healthy Start.

Q: I have medical bills. Will Healthy Start pay them?
A: Healthy Start will pay your medical bills retroactively for three (3) months after you have incurred them.

Q: How do I find out about the status of my application?
A: Call the appropriate Neighborhood Family Service Center to ask about the status.

Q: Once my application is approved, who do I contact?
A: Call the Employment and Family Services information line for assistance.

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