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Office of Governor Pete Ricketts

Gov. Ricketts, DHHS Provide Update on Medicaid Expansion

Media Contacts:  

Taylor Gage, Governor’s Office, 402-471-1970

Khalilah LeGrand, Dept. of Health and Human Services, 402-853-1320


Media Release:

Gov. Ricketts, DHHS Provide Update on Medicaid Expansion


Gov. Ricketts (podium) and DHHS CEO Dannette R. Smith (far left) at this morning’s press briefing.


Video from today’s briefing.


LINCOLN – Today, Governor Pete Ricketts provided an update on the State’s work to expand Medicaid during a morning press briefing at the State Capitol.  The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) will begin accepting applications for Medicaid Heritage Health Adult Expansion on August 1, 2020.  Benefits will begin on October 1, 2020.


DHHS CEO Dannette R. Smith and Jeremy Brunssen, Interim Director of the DHHS Division of Medicaid and Long-term Care, joined the Governor to provide details on Medicaid enrollment and coverage.


Heritage Health Adult expands Medicaid to lower income Nebraskans ages 19 to 64 who earn up to 138% of the federal poverty level.  For 2020, this is an income of about $17,000 per year for a single adult or $36,000 for a household of four.


Medicaid expansion enrollees will receive benefits that include physical health, behavioral health, and pharmacy coverage in a comprehensive, coordinated program.  Benefits are provided through managed care health organizations, also known as Heritage Health Plans.  Applicants meeting certain conditions will also qualify for dental, vision, and over-the-counter medication coverage.


Eligible Nebraskans are able to apply for Medicaid in the following ways:

  • Online at  
  • Over the phone by calling ACCESS Nebraska at:
    • Omaha: (402) 595-1178
    • Lincoln: (402) 473-7000
    • Toll Free: (855) 632-7633
    • TDD: (402) 471-7256
  • By paper (applications can be downloaded from
  •  In person at any DHHS office.


Additional information regarding Medicaid expansion is available on the DHHS website at


Full video of today’s press briefing is available here.