Covered CA Benefits for American Indians And Alaska Natives

by Holly Davies

CC with white space

For American Indians and Alaska Natives, your health insurance options expanded with the launch of the Affordable Care Act on January 1, 2014.  Whether you are young and healthy or already receiving your medical care through the Indian Health Service, it’s good to know you have affordable choices.

“Native American or Alaska Native’ most often refers to the process of a tribe being recognized by the United States federal government, or to a person being granted membership to a federally recognized tribe.”

First, you are exempt from the part of the law that requires citizens to purchase health insurance. There will be no penalty for you to pay for not enrolling. Of course not enrolling means you could one day be faced with crippling medical bills or lack of proper care. Let us show you the Covered CA difference.

When we enroll you through Covered CA, you may be eligible for some additional perks designed specifically for American Indians and Alaska Natives. 

  • No health care expenses, depending on your household income and family size. If you are eligible for this you will have no out of pocket expenses, such as copays, for certain services.
  • No health care cost for medical care from certain doctors and hospitals. For example, when you receive your care directly from the Indian Health Service, tribes, tribal organizations and contracted organizations.
  • Freedom to purchase or switch health plans any time of the year, you will not be required to wait for ‘Open Enrollment’ in the fall.

Covered CA can offer you either Medi-Cal or a health insurance plan based on your family size and household income. If you qualify for Medi-Cal you will not need to pay a monthly premium to receive the benefits. If you qualify for a subsidy to buy your private health plan you will be able to choose from a variety of such as Anthem, Blue Shield, Health Net, Kaiser Permanente and more. 


Sometimes tribes may receive only half of the funding needed for providing health services to tribal members. When they are able to bill your insurance company for you, they can receive money needed for the clinic. Between the funds received from Contract Health Services (CHS) and payments from your insurance company, you will be able to have your medical  needs met. Health insurance covers the cost of things your tribal or urban program does not, including; specialist doctors, tests, emergency room services and hospital care. Present your health insurance card to the clinic when you check in for your appointment so they can be paid for the care you receive.

The process of getting a quote, choosing a plan, and applying  on our website for your plan is  user friendly. In most cases there are no forms to complete. Phone support is available for you on weekdays so you can start and finish in a short amount of time. After you submit your application you will receive receipt by email. Later on you will receive an email confirmation the details of your completed enrollment along with payment instructions.

Covered CA will ask you for one of the verification documents below when you enroll. It’s ok to submit your application on our website and then send us a document for family members. We can help you learn about the types of documents allowed.

For a rate quote, plan details and applications we invite you to get an online quote or call us at 1-877-752-4737. We would be honored to assist you with your plan selection and show you how to enroll.

Posted: August 11th, 2014 under Health Plans in California