Emilia Ford became pregnant at 15 and, after her daughter was born, dropped out of high school.
As she held down different jobs during the past decade — including housekeeping and working in a relative’s retail store — she always thought about going for her GED to show she met high school academic skills.
But the Brookhaven, Pa., woman needed assistance finding tutors and paying for the set of four tests, which cost $20 each.
She found help from an unexpected source: her Medicaid health plan.
AmeriHealth Caritas, a Philadelphia-based insurer with 2 million Medicaid members in Pennsylvania and five other states, helps connect members with nonprofit groups providing GED test preparation classes, offers telephone coaching to keep members on track and pays the testing fees.
Ford is one of 62 plan members who have earned a GED certificate since the benefit began in 2013.