With more financial assistance available than ever before, time is running out for Californians to sign up for comprehensive health care coverage through Covered California. They have until January 31 to register during the current open registration period. The upcoming deadline comes as Covered California announced that a record 1.8 million people signed up through the exchange.
“We want to make sure people who need health insurance aren’t caught up in the last week of last-minute shopping,” said Peter V. Lee, executive director of Covered California. “Visit CoveredCA.com today and find out how affordable coverage can be for you and your family.”
Those interested in applying for coverage can explore their options — and find out if they qualify for financial assistance — in just minutes using the shopping and comparison tool on CoveredCA.com. All they need to do is enter their ZIP code, household income, and the age of those who need coverage to find out what plans are available in their area.
The record number of enrollees is driven by the American Rescue Plan, the federal response to the pandemic, which is providing enrollees with more financial assistance than ever before. As a result, two-thirds of covered California enrollees are eligible to get coverage for 2022 for $10 or less per month.
In addition, financial assistance for middle-income consumers reduces many of their premiums by hundreds of dollars each month.
“The U.S. bailout is delivering the biggest savings to consumers since the Affordable Care Act began, but for people to benefit, they need to act before the end of the month,” Lee said. “Your health is too important to be without coverage or access to care, especially during the ongoing surge in COVID-19 infections statewide.”
The recent COVID-19 surge has seen Californians infected with the virus surpass 7 million, and the state’s total death toll is approaching 80,000.
A recent study found that the average cost of a complex care COVID-19 hospitalization, in which patients required ventilation or admission to an intensive care unit, was over $127,000 in California. People with health insurance through Covered California would pay only a tiny fraction of that cost.
“No one wants to end up in an emergency room or hospital for COVID-19 or any other reason, but if you do, a health plan through Covered California provides financial protection and can save you dozens of dollars. thousands of dollars,” Lee said. .
Covered California’s open enrollment period extends through January 31, 2022 – those who enroll before January 31 will have their coverage begin February 1.
“Many uninsured people don’t know they’re eligible for financial assistance, which allows them to get coverage for $10 or less, or even at no cost,” Lee said. “Even if you’ve already checked out, visit CoveredCA.com and check back, because now is the time to sign up with this increased financial assistance.”
In addition to enrolling consumers through its website, Covered California also partners with certified and licensed recruiters who provide free, confidential help throughout the state. Covered California works with more than 11,000 licensed insurance agents, who have established more than 500 storefronts in communities across California. Consumers can visit https://www.coveredca.com/support/contact-us/ and find the agent closest to them. They can also call Covered California at (800) 300-1506 and get information or register over the phone.
Covered California’s online enrollment portal and certified recruiters will also help people find out if they qualify for Medi-Cal. Enrollment in Medi-Cal is available year-round and coverage will begin the day after a person enrolls. Additionally, people can apply for Medi-Cal online or by picking up an application at one of the many county resource centers in the area.
Covered California is the only place eligible people can get financial assistance on a sliding scale to reduce premium costs. Consumers can then compare health insurance plans and choose the one that best suits their health needs and budget. Depending on their income, some consumers may qualify for the low-cost or no-cost Medi-Cal program.
Covered California is an independent part of the state government whose job it is to make the health insurance market work for California consumers. It is overseen by a five-member board appointed by the governor and the legislature. For more information about Covered California, visit www.CoveredCA.com.