Medicaid is a health insurance program for eligible individuals and families with low incomes and resources. It is a means-tested program that is funded by the states and the federal government, and is managed individually by each state.
Some of the U.S. citizens served by Medicaid are eligible low-income parents, children, seniors, and people with disabilities. Being poor, does not necessarily qualify an individual for Medicaid. The eligibility rules differ significantly from state to state.
Medicaid is the largest source of funding for medical and health-related services for people with limited income in the US. Because of the aging population, the fastest growing aspect of Medicaid is nursing home coverage and in some states Supportive Living under the Medicaid waiver program.
It is important to note that not all nursing homes are Medicaid eligible and vast majority of assisted living are private-pay. Any independent living or retirement community set up are not paid for through Medicaid either.
Information provided here is very basic and specific to its relation to long term care. For up to date and detailed information visit the official Medicaid website.