News Release

Date Posted

Happy Valentine’s Day News for California: State Uninsured Rate Falls to a New Record Low


  • California’s uninsured rate drops to 7.1 percent.
  • Rate is down from 17 percent in 2013, before the Affordable Care Act.
  • California’s uninsured rate is falling faster than the national average.



SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A new survey from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that California’s uninsured rate has fallen to a new record low of 7.1 percent, which is significantly lower than the 17 percent the CDC found in 2013.

“Covered California is proud to be part of the effort that is helping millions of people get the coverage and care they need,” said Covered California Executive Director Peter V. Lee. “From expanding Medi-Cal to launching a competitive state-based marketplace, California is empowering consumers and providing quality and value.”


The CDC survey, which covered January to September 2016, also showed a dramatic improvement when compared to national averages.

Prior to the Affordable Care Act, California’s uninsured rate for all ages was higher than the national average, 17 percent compared to 14.4 percent. Since that time, California has fallen below the national average and is dropping at a significantly faster pace. The CDC says the difference between the two rates was one percentage point at the end of 2015. The difference between the two rates has now increased to 1.7 percentage points, 7.1 percent in California compared to 8.8 percent nationally.



Covered California noted that this data does not include the recent open enrollment period that closed on Jan. 31 — during which more than 412,000 Californians signed up for coverage.

Now that open enrollment has ended, Covered California has begun new marketing focused on enrolling those who are eligible to sign up now due to changes in their life circumstances, such as losing their health care coverage, getting married, having a child or moving.

For more information on special-enrollment rules, visit: www.CoveredCA.com/individuals-and-families/getting-covered/special-enrollment.

Consumers who qualify for Medi-Cal may enroll through Covered California year round.

For more information, consumers should visit CoveredCA.com, where they can enroll online or get information about obtaining free, confidential in-person assistance in a variety of languages. They can find a certified enroller at a storefront in their area or have a certified enroller contact them through the “Help on Demand” feature.

Consumers can also enroll over the phone by calling Covered California at (800) 300-1506.

The full CDC survey can be viewed here: https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nhis/earlyrelease/insur201702.pdf.

About Covered California
Covered California is the state’s health insurance marketplace, where Californians can find affordable, high-quality insurance from top insurance companies. Covered California is the only place where individuals who qualify can get financial assistance on a sliding scale to reduce premium costs. Consumers can then compare health insurance plans and choose the plan that works best for 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 is to make the health insurance marketplace work for California’s consumers. It is overseen by a five-member board appointed by the governor and the legislature. For more information about Covered California, please visit www.CoveredCA.com.

Covered California Finishes Fourth Open Enrollment With More Than 412,000 New Consumers and Strong Participation From Young Enrollees


  • New plan selections met enrollment projections for the fourth open-enrollment period.
  • Nearly 50,000 consumers signed up for health care coverage in the final two days before the Jan. 31 deadline.
  • Strong finish and overall enrollment are credited to effective work by Certified Insurance Agents and enrollers and robust television, digital, print and outdoor advertising that ran throughout the open-enrollment period.
  • The crucial demographic of young adults ages 18–34 accounted for 37 percent of enrollment, contributing to a healthy risk mix for 2017.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Covered California announced Monday that it finished the open-enrollment period with 412,105 new consumers signing up for health coverage.

“California met our projections, driven by the nearly 50,000 consumers who signed up for health insurance in the last two days of open enrollment,” Covered California Executive Director Peter V. Lee said. “This high number of sign-ups validates the surveying we did after the election. When consumers know they have a pathway to get health care made affordable by tax credits, they sign up.”

In addition to the strong pace of enrollment, Covered California’s initial analysis shows that the number of new young adults signing up for coverage comprised a large proportion of new enrollees for the second consecutive year.

Young adults in the crucial 18- to 34-year-old demographic accounted for an estimated 37 percent of this year’s plan selections, compared to 38 percent in the open-enrollment period for 2016, 34 percent for the open-enrollment period for 2015 and 29 percent for the open-enrollment period in 2014.

“Covered California is continuing to enroll consumers in large numbers and with a goodmix of younger and older, which helps keep rates down for everyone and keeps the entire individual market stable,” Lee said.

Lee said survey research conducted in December among potential enrollees showed that political uncertainty about the future of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act created some concern, but did not prevent individuals from enrolling. Instead, concerns about affordability remain top of mind, with some uninsured consumers still not understanding that financial help, or subsidies, are available to reduce the cost of health insurance.

“The demand for affordable health insurance remains very strong in California,” Lee said. “Reaching consumers where they are with the information they need is critical to attracting the enrollees we need to make competitive health insurance marketplaces work.”

While the rate of renewal from 2016 to 2017 will not be clear until March, when it is possible to reconcile paid premiums, Lee said there are early indications that consumers who enrolled in 2016 are continuing into 2017.

On Friday, the federal government reported enrollment and renewal figures for federal marketplace states. Using similar criteria, Covered California has enrolled more than 368,000 new consumers during the fourth open-enrollment period and continues to enroll 1.2 million consumers, for a total enrollment of more than 1.5 million people.

“Covered California continues to grow and make a difference in the lives of hundreds of thousands of people,” Lee said.

Now that open enrollment has ended, Covered California has begun new marketing focused on enrolling those who are eligible to sign up now due to changes in their life circumstances, such as losing their health care coverage, getting married, having a child or moving.

Special-enrollment marketing includes multicultural and multi-segment radio, digital and display advertising statewide.

For more information on special-enrollment rules, visit: www.CoveredCA.com/individuals-and-families/getting-covered/special-enrollment.

Consumers who qualify for Medi-Cal may enroll through Covered California year round.

For more information, consumers should visit CoveredCA.com, where they can enroll online or get information about obtaining free, confidential in-person assistance in a variety of languages. They can find a certified enroller at a storefront in their area or have a certified enroller contact them through the “Help on Demand” feature.

Consumers can also enroll over the phone by calling Covered California at (800) 300-1506.

About Covered California
Covered California is the state’s health insurance marketplace, where Californians can find affordable, high-quality insurance from top insurance companies. Covered California is the only place where individuals who qualify can get financial assistance on a sliding scale to reduce premium costs. Consumers can then compare health insurance plans and choose the plan that works best for 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 is to make the health insurance marketplace work for California’s consumers. It is overseen by a five-member board appointed by the governor and the legislature. For more information about Covered California, please visit www.CoveredCA.com.

Covered California Gives Consumers More Time to ‘Cross the Finish Line’ as It Prepares for Surge of Enrollment


  • Consumers must begin the application process by the end of Jan. 31 and complete their enrollment by the end of Feb. 4.
  • Thousands of Certified Insurance Agents and Community Enrollment Partners are ready to provide free and confidential in-person assistance.

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Covered California announced it is giving consumers who attempt to enroll by the Jan. 31 deadline four more days to complete their enrollment.

“Experience tells us that people wait until the last day to sign up for health insurance, and we do not want to leave anyone behind,” said Covered California Executive Director Peter V. Lee. “Health care is so important, and people should not miss this opportunity to get coverage if they get caught up in a wave of last-minute shoppers.”

Between Feb. 1 and Feb. 4, consumers who started an application can complete the process with help from a Certified Insurance Agent, Service Center Representative or Community Enrollment Partner. Enrollment partners include Certified Enrollment Counselors, Certified Application Counselors and Plan-Based Enrollers. Those who finish their application by Feb. 4 will have their health care coverage start on March 1, 2017.

“Covered California is committed to helping all consumers cross the enrollment finish line,” Lee said. “Our top priority is making sure they have the time and help they need to find the Covered California health plan that works for them.”

Consumers interested in enrolling online can do so on CoveredCA.com. They can also get free and confidential in-person assistance, in a variety of languages, by clicking on “Free Local Help to Enroll.” They can find a nearby enroller or have a certified enroller contact them through the “Help on Demand” feature. Consumers can also enroll over the phone by calling Covered California at (800) 300-1506.

Covered California also stressed that financial assistance is available to help consumers pay for their coverage. The financial help allows 60 percent of consumers to get a Bronze plan for less than $10 per month, and 50 percent of consumers to get a Silver plan for less than $100 per month. Nearly nine out of every 10 Covered California enrollees receive some level of financial assistance.

“We will help people get across the finish line in the days following the deadline, but you must take steps to begin the process by today,” Lee said. “Covered California has partners who will make enrollment easier than you think, and with the financial help that is available it can be more affordable than you realize.”

Once open enrollment ends, consumers may sign up only if they experience a life-changing event such as losing their health care coverage, getting married, having a child or moving. Medi-Cal enrollment is year round.

About Covered California
Covered California is the state’s health insurance marketplace, where Californians can find affordable, high-quality insurance from top insurance companies. Covered California is the only place where individuals who qualify can get financial assistance on a sliding scale to reduce premium costs. Consumers can then compare health insurance plans and choose the plan that works best for 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 is to make the health insurance marketplace work for California’s consumers. It is overseen by a five-member board appointed by the governor and the legislature. For more information about Covered California, please visit www.CoveredCA.com.

New Study Shows Rising Premiums and Hundreds of Millions Added to Federal Budget if Funding to Reduce Patients’ Cost-Sharing Changes


  • Eliminating direct federal funding for cost-sharing reductions for health plan enrollees would raise premiums by 16.6 percent in 2018 for Silver plan consumers.
  • Modeling suggests consumers who benefit from subsidies would shift to non-Silver plans.
  • Overall, the federal premium-subsidy funding for enrollees would rise by an amount significantly above the current cost-sharing reduction funding.
  • Enrollment in Covered California would rise slightly, while enrollment off exchange would decrease slightly, increasing the federal cost by approximately 29 percent for the same benefit to consumers.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A decision by federal officials to eliminate direct federal funding to reduce cost-sharing for more than 50 percent of consumers in Covered California would increase premiums substantially for Californians who buy health care in the individual market, while also resulting in higher costs for the federal government, according to new research commissioned by Covered California.

The study, “Evaluating the Potential Consequences of Terminating Direct Federal Cost- Sharing Reduction (CSR) Funding,” looked at what would happen to premiums and how consumers would react to those changes if instead of funding cost-sharing reductions through direct federal funding — as has been the case since 2014 — health plans were required to build the costs of such subsidies into their premiums. The study found that consumers in the individual market who are enrolled in Silver plans, both inside and outside of Covered California, would see their prices rise 16.6 percent.

In addition, since the calculation for Advanced Premium Tax Credits (APTC) is based on the cost of the second-lowest-priced Silver plan, any increase in premiums would also result in an increase in the amount of tax credits that help consumers pay for their premiums. The study found that eliminating cost-sharing reductions and requiring health plans to build the costs into premiums in 2018 would increase federal expenses by $221 million, or 29 percent, because the new amount of APTC would be significantly greater than what the government currently pays directly in cost-sharing.

“Covered California commissioned this report as part of our effort to plan for the future and provide concrete analysis of the real-world impacts of the policy alternatives being considered on consumers and the federal budget,” said Peter V. Lee, executive director of Covered California. “This report underscores the importance of making policy choices informed by evidence. Here the evidence is clear that changing the payment method for cost-sharing reductions would be a bad deal for the federal government and a bad deal for consumers who do not receive subsidies.”

Funding to reduce cost-sharing is one of the two ways that health care is made more affordable through federal financial assistance. The first way is to provide premium assistance in the form of a tax credit (the Advanced Premium Tax Credit), which eligible consumers receive in the form of a monthly reduction to the premium they would have paid for private insurance. Nationally about 85 percent of consumers with coverage through marketplaces receive the tax credit, and about 90 percent of consumers enrolled through Covered California receive this benefit.

Reducing cost-sharing lowers out-of-pocket costs for consumers once they are enrolled and getting care, with the size of the reduction based on the consumer’s income. The rationale behind reduced cost-sharing is the recognition that lower-income individuals would avoid needed care if faced with higher out-of-pocket costs, given their income.

Cost-sharing reductions are available to Covered California consumers who earn between 138 percent and 250 percent of the federal poverty level. These funds help lower-income enrollees increase their access to care by lowering their copays, coinsurance, deductibles and maximum out-of-pocket costs. For example, a consumer who enrolls in a typical Silver plan would pay $45 for a primary care visit, while a consumer with reduced cost-sharing could pay as little as $5. As of June 2016, more than 678,000 consumers — about 50 percent of total enrollment — were enrolled in a Covered California Silver plan with reduced cost-sharing.

The study, which was conducted by researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles, looked at the potential impact of the Department of Health and Human Services dropping the appeal of a 2014 lawsuit initiated by members of the U.S. House of Representatives.

This study is the first of its kind by a state-based exchange to examine the impact of such a move on consumers and on federal spending.

The study can be found here: http://coveredca.com/news/pdfs/CoveredCA_Consequences_of_Terminating_CSR.pdf.

Also on Thursday, Covered California released an analysis of repealing the Affordable Care Act without replacing it.

“This in-depth analysis underscores the importance of not having disruptions to the market that would cause imminent harm to consumers,” Lee said. “And it is also helping us look ahead to 2018 and beyond.”

The analysis can be viewed here:

http://coveredca.com/news/pdfs/Implications_of_Repeal_without_replacement.pdf.

For health coverage in 2017, Covered California is continuing open-enrollment efforts through Tuesday, Jan. 31.

Consumers interested in enrolling online can do so on CoveredCA.com. They can also get free and confidential in-person assistance, in a variety of languages, by clicking on “Free Local Help to Enroll.” They can find a nearby enroller or have a certified enroller contact them through the “Help on Demand” feature. Consumers can also enroll over the phone by calling Covered California at (800) 300-1506.

About Covered California
Covered California is the state’s health insurance marketplace, where Californians can find affordable, high-quality insurance from top insurance companies. Covered California is the only place where individuals who qualify can get financial assistance on a sliding scale to reduce premium costs. Consumers can then compare health insurance plans and choose the plan that works best for their health needs and budget. Depending on their income, some consumers may qualify for the low-cost or no-cost Medi-Cal program.

In addition, small business owners can purchase affordable health insurance for their employees through Covered California for Small Business.

Covered California is an independent part of the state government whose job is to make the health insurance marketplace work for California’s consumers. It is overseen by a five-member board appointed by the governor and the legislature. For more information about Covered California, please visit www.CoveredCA.com.


Covered California Enrollment Continues at Strong Pace; New Research Suggests ACA News Coverage Is Not Deterring Consumers


  • More than 320,000 consumers have newly enrolled since Nov. 1 — a similar pace to last year.
  • Research conducted in December indicates the Affordable Care Act (ACA) debate at the national level is a concern for consumers, but is not keeping them from enrolling.
  • Affordability continues to be the main perceived barrier to getting coverage.
  • Most have a positive feeling about Covered California.

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. — As of Monday, Jan. 23, 322,014 people have newly enrolled in a health plan through Covered California since Nov. 1, keeping pace with enrollment last year despite a measure of concern on the part of Californians about the future of the ACA.

“As we continue working to enroll consumers in Covered California, it’s heartening to see that they continue to place great faith in our brand and are getting the financial help essential to getting and keeping health coverage for those who need it,” Covered California Executive Director Peter V. Lee said. “While people are worried, the uncertainty is not preventing them from enrolling or renewing in coverage for 2017.”

The study, titled “An Integrated Quantitative and Qualitative Study on Post-Election Attitudes Toward Enrolling in and Renewing Health Insurance Coverage,” was conducted between Dec. 14, 2016, and Jan. 3, 2017, to evaluate whether to adjust Covered California’s marketing and outreach messaging. The qualitative and quantitative research, which included focus-group testing and an online survey of 500 respondents, was conducted by Greenberg Strategy, an Emeryville-based research and strategy consultancy with clients around the world.

Among the findings:
  • Concerns about affordability and costs rising far outweigh concerns about the future of the ACA.
  • Consumers say if they could afford coverage, they would sign up for it.
  • Ninety percent of consumers think subsidies will continue to be available in 2017.
  • The belief that the ACA will be cancelled is not associated with hesitation to enroll or renew.
The survey also found that while the affordability of health care remains a top concern among consumers, many still do not know that financial help is available to lower the costs of their premiums and care.

“Subsidies to help consumers buy health insurance on the exchange are critical to making coverage affordable to many people in California,” Lee said. “Because those subsidies are available, more than a million customers are able to buy health coverage they can afford.”

As of June 2016, policyholders have benefitted from an average of $440 per month in financial assistance, and nearly 90 percent of Covered California members receive some level of financial help.

“Consistent with what we have seen in the last four years, affordability is still the barrier, especially for those who remain uninsured,” Lee said. “Any policy changes coming from Washington D.C. need to continue to address consumers’ core concerns about affordability.”

According to the research, consumers have a lot of trust in the Covered California brand, with a “willingness to believe that California will save the day, and an openness to and trust in the idea that Covered California will be part of the solution.”
  • “Right now, I feel California is looking out for us, and we can’t trust what’s going on in D.C.” — Focus-group participant, uninsured.
  • “I don't think California will let us down. We moved here for a government that takes care of its people.” — Survey respondent, insured through Covered California.
Lee said consumers should not hesitate to enroll, and that Covered California is committed to keeping them informed of any changes that could affect them in the future.

“We recognize that the discussion in Washington can be unsettling, but those without insurance should not hesitate to enroll in coverage if they can afford it,” he said. “Purchasing insurance can give them access to health care almost immediately, which can be life-changing.”

The complete study can be found here: http://www.coveredca.com/news/pdfs/CC_Current_Sentiment_Topline_012417_FINAL.pdf.

Open enrollment continues through Jan. 31, 2017.

Consumers interested in enrolling online can do so on CoveredCA.com. They can also get free and confidential in-person assistance, in a variety of languages, by clicking on “Free Local Help to Enroll.” They can find a nearby enroller or have a certified enroller contact them through the “Help on Demand” feature. Consumers can also enroll over the phone by calling Covered California at (800) 300-1506.

About Covered California
Covered California is the state’s health insurance marketplace, where Californians can find affordable, high-quality insurance from top insurance companies. Covered California is the only place where individuals who qualify can get financial assistance on a sliding scale to reduce premium costs. Consumers can then compare health insurance plans and choose the plan that works best for 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 is to make the health insurance marketplace work for California’s consumers. It is overseen by a five-member board appointed by the governor and the legislature. For more information about Covered California, please visit www.CoveredCA.com.

New Study Shows Covered California Consumers Saving and Paying Much Less Than Expected for Quality Health Care Coverage


  • Competitive market allows consumers to save money by shopping.
  • The average purchase price for health plans in each metal tier has been more than 10 percent below the average offered price for three consecutive years.
  • Consumers now have through midnight on Friday, Jan. 20, to sign up and have their coverage start Feb. 1.

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A new independent study by The Commonwealth Fund found Covered California consumers are protecting themselves from rate changes and paying much less than the average price of plans by shopping for the best value. The study looked at the policies Covered California consumers purchased between 2014 and 2016 and found the average price paid in each year has been between 11 and 15 percent less than the average price of the plans offered.

“This study shows how Covered California consumers are being smart and saving money by shopping,” said Peter V. Lee, executive director of Covered California. “Consumers are getting the best value, which means most are paying far less than ‘the average’ premium.”

Among the study’s key findings:
  • The study found consumers in each metal tier paid 11.6 percent less than the average price offered in 2014, 13.2 percent less in 2015 and 15.2 percent less in 2016.
  • When measured as an average purchase price, consumers saw a premium increase of 2 percent over the 2014–15 period, and 3 percent over the 2015–16 period.
  • Consumers responded to rate changes by shifting to lower-cost plans. In 2016, 62 percent of new enrollees and 56 percent of renewing enrollees chose the lowest- or second-lowest-priced plans available.
  • The findings suggest Covered California is helping to moderate cost growth. The researchers say, “Covered California demonstrates — straight out of Economics 101 — that if consumers have easy-to-understand, transparent information without being overwhelmed with too many choices, they will buy lower-premium products available on their tier.”
“Covered California’s competitive market is working and putting consumers in the driver’s seat,” Lee said. “With our patient-centered plan designs, consumers in the same metal tier get the same benefits, many of which are not subject to a deductible.”

The study can be found here: http://www.commonwealthfund.org/publications/in-the-literature/2017/jan/consumers-buy-lower-cost-plans.

Covered California also announced it is extending a key enrollment deadline for consumers who want their coverage to start on Feb. 1. Consumers will now have until Friday, Jan. 20 at midnight to sign up for health insurance that will begin at the beginning of next month.

“The original Jan. 15 deadline falls on a Sunday this year, which is in the middle of a three-day holiday weekend,” Lee said. “Covered California wants to make sure consumers have the time they need to examine their choices and choose the health plan that best fits their needs.”

Open enrollment runs through Jan. 31, 2017. Consumers who enroll between Jan. 21 and Jan. 31 will have their coverage start on March 1.

Consumers interested in enrolling online can do so on CoveredCA.com. They can also get free and confidential in-person assistance, in a variety of languages, by clicking on “Free Local Help to Enroll.” They can find a nearby enroller or have a certified enroller contact them through the “Help on Demand” feature. Consumers can also enroll over the phone by calling Covered California at (800) 300-1506.

About Covered California
Covered California is the state’s health insurance marketplace, where Californians can find affordable, high-quality insurance from top insurance companies. Covered California is the only place where individuals who qualify can get financial assistance on a sliding scale to reduce premium costs. Consumers can then compare health insurance plans and choose the plan that works best for their health needs and budget. Depending on their income, some consumers may qualify for the low-cost or no-cost Medi-Cal program.

In addition, small business owners can purchase affordable health insurance for their employees through Covered California for Small Business.

Covered California is an independent part of the state government whose job is to make the health insurance marketplace work for California’s consumers. It is overseen by a five-member board appointed by the governor and the legislature. For more information about Covered California, please visit www.CoveredCA.com.

Covered California Brings Health Care Within Reach and Shows How Consumers Can Save by Shopping


  • Consumers who change plans while renewing their Covered California health plan are saving on average $38 per month, or $456 a year, by switching to the lowest-priced plan in their metal tier — demonstrating the power of choice and competition.
  • Covered California is addressing the need for truly affordable health insurance: With federal tax credits, nearly 50 percent of consumers can get a Silver plan for less than $100 per month, often with low copays and deductibles. In addition, 60 percent of consumers receiving tax credits can get a Bronze plan for less than $10 per month that provides free preventive care and protection for high-cost medical events.
  • 258,158 new consumers have signed up during this enrollment period.

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Covered California released new data that demonstrates that affordable health care is within reach of consumers, and that renewing consumers can save money when they shop around and switch to a lower-cost plan within the same metal tier.

“Covered California has built a competitive market where the consumer is in the driver’s seat and our health plans are fighting for their business,” said Peter V. Lee, executive director of Covered California. “Consumers who are shopping and switching to the lowest-cost plan in the same metal tier are saving more than $450 per year.”

The data reveals two key points for the approximately 1.3 million Californians who are renewing their coverage with Covered California:
  • Enrollees who have switched their health plan for 2017, but whose plan remains within the same metal tier, have saved an average of $38 per household per month or $456 per year.
  • The majority of renewing enrollees, 78 percent, could pay less than they are paying now if they switch to the lowest-cost plan within the same metal tier.
For both those renewing their coverage and those getting covered for the first time, Covered California released data confirming the affordability of health insurance for the close to 90 percent of consumers who benefit from federal tax credits:
  • Nearly half of all Covered California consumers, 49 percent, can get a Silver plan costing less than $100 per month. All of these consumers would benefit from financial assistance to lower their out-of-pocket expenses at various levels. In fact, 195,000 people, or 17 percent of current Covered California enrollees, can visit their doctor for only a $5 copay and will have an annual deductible of only $75 for an individual and $150 for a family. (The deductible only applies to hospital care.)

    • For all Silver plans, no outpatient services — such as primary, urgent and specialist care, and diagnostic tests and generic prescription drugs — are subject to a deductible.
  • More than half of all Covered California consumers receiving a tax credit, 59 percent, can get a Bronze plan for less than $10 per month. Bronze plans offer three visits to a primary care physician or specialist that are not subject to a deductible.
“The availability of tax credits is making health care truly affordable,” Lee said. “Not only can our consumers see the best doctors and hospitals in the state, but our patient-centered benefits are giving them access to care without being subject to a deductible.”

Covered California also announced that as of the end of Jan. 3, more than 258,000 people have signed up for health insurance coverage through CoveredCA.com or a certified enroller.

Open enrollment runs through Jan. 31, 2017. Consumers who enroll by the Jan. 15 deadline will have their coverage start on Feb. 1. Those who enroll between Jan. 16 and Jan. 31 will have coverage beginning March 1.

Consumers interested in enrolling online can do so on CoveredCA.com. They can also get free and confidential in-person assistance, in a variety of languages, by clicking on “Free Local Help to Enroll.” They can find a nearby enroller or have a certified enroller contact them through the “Help on Demand” feature. Consumers can also enroll over the phone by calling Covered California at (800) 300-1506.

About Covered California
Covered California is the state’s health insurance marketplace, where Californians can find affordable, high-quality insurance from top insurance companies. Covered California is the only place where individuals who qualify can get financial assistance on a sliding scale to reduce premium costs. Consumers can then compare health insurance plans and choose the plan that works best for their health needs and budget. Depending on their income, some consumers may qualify for the low-cost or no-cost Medi-Cal program.

In addition, small business owners can purchase affordable health insurance for their employees through Covered California for Small Business.

Covered California is an independent part of the state government whose job is to make the health insurance marketplace work for California’s consumers. It is overseen by a five-member board appointed by the governor and the legislature. For more information about Covered California, please visit www.CoveredCA.com.


Covered California Announces Appointment of Karen Johnson as Chief Deputy Executive Director, Operations

Also Announces Selection of Darryl Lewis as Director, Office of the Ombudsman

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Covered California Executive Director Peter V. Lee announced today the appointment by the Board of Directors of Karen Johnson as chief deputy executive director, Operations; and the selection of Darryl Lewis as the first director of the Office of the Ombudsman.