Covered California and You
Your Questions, Answered
When can I buy health insurance in Covered California, California’s health insurance marketplace?
Open enrollment begins on November 15th, 2014 and continues through February 15th, 2015. You can shop for, compare and purchase health insurance all in one place. It’s your health care, made simple. If you enroll by December 15th, 2014, you can access health care providers starting January 1, 2015 with your new coverage.
Which health insurance providers can I choose from?
As a San Franciscan, you may select amongst the following proven health insurance providers: Anthem, Blue Shield, Chinese Community Health Plan, Health Net, and Kaiser Permanente. Plans are offered at four levels of coverage: Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. The plans vary in monthly payments and the level of health care related costs they will cover. A Bronze plan will lower monthly payments for you and your family, but increase the amount you pay for a doctor visit or a necessary procedure. Platinum plans will have a higher monthly payment, but that will translate into lower costs when you need medical coverage the most. For more information about the levels of coverage, please click here.
How much will the plans cost?
For individuals with the lowest income levels, coverage will be completely free in Medi-Cal, California’s Medicaid program. For other incomes, discounts may apply. For example, individuals making up to $46,680 and families of four earning up to $95,400 may qualify for tax credits that will pay a portion of the health insurance plan you select. To determine how affordable your coverage will be or if you or your family qualify for a discount, please click here.
Am I eligible for free health care?
Thanks to the expansion of Medi-Cal, California’s Medicaid program, millions more Californians now have access to free health care coverage. Those eligible include people under the age of 65, those with disabilities, and people with an income of less than $16,105 for an individual and $32,913 for a family of four.
What If I am on Medicare?
If you are already on Medicare, you will simply continue to keep your current coverage. But that doesn’t mean you will not benefit from health care reform. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, the life of the Medicare Trust Fund has been extended by 12 years. Additionally, according to the Department of Health and Human Services, more than 8.2 million seniors and persons with disabilities have saved over $11.5 billion in prescription drug costs since 2010.
What if I am undocumented?
Undocumented San Franciscans will continue to be eligible for care through Healthy San Francisco. Only legal residents of California will be eligible to purchase health insurance through Covered California.
What if I own a small business?
Under the Affordable Care Act, it is completely optional for small businesses to choose to offer employee coverage. If you choose to do so, offering affordable health coverage to your employees just got easier. Your small business can enroll in the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) for coverage that begins in 2015. The SHOP marketplace will make it simple for small business owners and workers to pool their buying power and carry out one-stop shopping for affordable plans.
Additionally, your business may qualify for a small business tax credit that could cover up to half of your premium costs for covering your employees. This tax credit is only available for plans purchased through SHOP. For more information on the tax credit, click here.
What if I am on Healthy San Francisco?
Getting affordable health insurance means you are covered when you need it the most. The health insurance provided under Covered California or Medi-Cal will be much more comprehensive than Healthy San Francisco. Your Healthy SF Application Assistor will help you choose the right health insurance program for you and your family through Covered California or Medi-Cal. For more information, visit here.