California Health Care

Find latest news, legislation and regulations related to the California health care system. Medical coverage services in the golden state are offered through the following options:

  • Covered California: The Health Exchange Marketplace
  • Insurance Carriers: providing off-exchange medical benefits
  • Veterans Administration (VA) Health Care Coverage
  • Medi-Cal
  • Prison Health Care for California

Health care in California has gone through radical changes since the passage of the Patient Protection Affordable Care Act (PPACA) in 2010 and the implementation of Health Care Reform in 2013. Obamacare plans in California are sold through the state health insurance exchange, Covered California.

Individuals, families and businesses can enroll on a health care plan through Covered California, through Medi-Cal, through a health insurance broker, or by contacting a health insurance carrier directly. Popular carriers offering health insurance in California include Anthem Blue Cross, Blue Shield of California, Kaiser Permanente, Health Net, Molina and United Healthcare. For rates and benefits, click California Health Insurance Quotes. Open Enrollment 2017 is from November 1, 2016 to January 31, 2017. Outside of that window, you may apply during the Special Enrollment Period as long as you have a qualifying life event.

Government agencies that regulate health care in California include the California Department of Insurance, the California Department of Health Care Services, the Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC) and Ombudsman. The DMHC and Ombudsman offer protections and legal assistance for the consumers of health care in California.


Free health insurance in California will become a reality starting on January 1, 2022. Through the California State Exchange, some consumers (based on income and household size) will be able to purchase plans with a $0 per month premium.

Up to this time, the lowest priced plans through Covered California have been $1 a month. Starting next year, for the first-time, qualified Californians will be able to get health insurance for free.

California legislation AB 133 allows for the State of California to pay the $1 PMPM (per member per month) premium that federal law excludes. This legislation passed in Sacramento on July 15, 2021. It was signed into law by Governor Gavin Newsom twelve days later on July 27, 2021.

Thus, the State of California will be paying the $1 PMPM in 2022 for Covered California enrollees. This new financial assistance will be called the “California Premium Credit”.

Posted: August 20th, 2021 under Covered California Insurance

If you’re self-employed, a considerable financial concern will be finding affordable California self-employed health insurance coverage. Though the cost of health insurance for self-employed workers always seems to be rising, you may be able to deduct 100% of health insurance premiums you pay for yourself, your dependents and your spouse, up to set limits.

Use this guide to help you navigate your options for California health insurance as a self-employed worker or small business owner. We can help you find the affordable health insurance you need to protect your health and the health of your loved ones.

Before you can find the best health insurance plan for you, you need to determine whether you need self-employed health insurance coverage or small business health insurance coverage.

If you are a self-employed worker, you can enroll in high-quality, flexible individual health insurance coverage. You are considered a self-employed individual if you have a business that makes money but...

Posted: August 19th, 2021 under Covered California Insurance

For many workers in the U.S., one of the perks of being hired by a company is getting health insurance coverage from it. Employer-sponsored health coverage is the most common type of private health insurance in the country. Not everyone who works for a company or who provides services to a business is eligible for health insurance coverage from it, though. In many cases, part-time employees can’t get coverage. 

Independent contractors, or 1099 employees, also typically don’t get employer-sponsored health coverage. This is because independent contractors are technically self-employed. However, some companies might offer group health insurance to their independent contractors. Learn more about the difference between 1099 and other types of workers and what the health insurance options are for the self-employed.

The phrase “1099 employee” is technically a misnomer, as a person who gets paid on a 1099 basis is legally not an employee of a company. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS)...

Millions of Americans have been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, physically, emotionally and financially. According to the U.S. Department of the Treasury, over 9.5 million workers lost their jobs during the crisis, and 4 million of the unemployed have been out of work for half a year or longer.

In response to the pandemic, Congress passed the American Rescue Plan, and President Joe Biden recently signed the bill into law. The American Rescue Plan aims to bring temporary relief to individuals and businesses and help them recover from the pandemic’s economic impact. One component of the act focuses on improving access to affordable health insurance.

How does this plan affect your health care as a California resident? Let’s explore the American Rescue Plan and what it means for health insurance coverage in California.

On March 11, 2021, President Joe Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP). This $1.9 trillion plan provides funding for various programs, businesses...

Posted: May 7th, 2021

An app-based driver is someone who drives for a ride-hailing app like Lyft and Uber or other apps like Postmates, Instacart and DoorDash. Someone who works as a driver for one of these apps either provides pre-arranged transportation services or on-demand delivery services in a personal vehicle. Working as an app-based driver can be a great side gig for someone who wants to use their weekends or a few hours each weekday after their full-time job to earn some extra money. 

If you are an Uber driver or Lyft driver or you want to become an app-based driver in California, you should know about CA Proposition 22.  

Prop 22 in California was a ballot measure that determined ride-hailing companies should classify workers as independent contractors. The measure allows these companies to adopt the corresponding wage and labor policies. The initiative was voted on during the state election in November 2020

CA Proposition 22 is an exception to Assembly Bill 5, which states that gig-economy w...

Posted: May 7th, 2021

If you are enrolling yourself or your family in Covered California or in Medi-Cal, you no longer have to be concerned about that affecting citizenship or being a “Public Charge.”

The Public Charge ruling, which was of concern during the time of President Trump, has been rescinded by President Biden. This is no longer an issue and will not have any bearing on applications for citizenship.

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has stopped applying the 2019 Public Charge regulation to all pending applications and petitions. Purchasing insurance through Covered California and receiving financial help to pay for the insurance does not make an individual a “Public Charge”.

Also, Medi-Cal for adults or children is NO LONGER considered a public charge.

You may enroll through Covered California. You may enroll in Medi-Cal. Or, you may enroll a mixed family where adults are on Covered California and the children are enrolled in Medi-Cal. None of these would be consi...

Posted: April 14th, 2021 under Covered California Insurance

Medicare is the U.S. health insurance program designed to provide coverage to people over the age of 65, as well as individuals with end-stage renal disease and younger people with certain disabilities. One of the key benefits of Medicare is to help to control a person’s health care costs as they get older. As long as a person meets certain requirements, there are no premium payments for certain types of Medicare and the care you receive is often free or low-cost.

Although Medicare can provide coverage for much of your health care needs, it doesn’t cover everything. For that reason, some people decide to purchase supplemental Medicare coverage, also known as a Medigap policy. There are several reasons why Medigap might make sense for you and provide the most comprehensive form of health coverage. Learn more about what’s covered by Medicare and what you can get from purchasing a supplemental Medicare insurance plan in California. 

People over age 65 have a few options for getting s...

Posted: April 8th, 2021 under Covered California Insurance


With high deductibles and rising health care costs across the nation, more and more Americans are looking for ways to make their medical care more affordable. One method many Americans are turning to is opening a health savings account, also referred to as an HSA. HSAs are widely considered by financial experts to be one of the best savings options available to consumers. 

If you’re considering enrolling in an HSA, you may be wondering — what does an HSA cover? Do I qualify for an HSA? If I meet HSA requirements, how can I open an account? In this guide, we’ll provide answers to all these questions and many more.

A health savings account (HSA) is a savings account used with a high-deductible qualifying health insurance plan. This savings account is appealing to many consumers because money can be drawn from the account tax-free. Thus, consumers can use their pre-tax dollars to pay for their qualifying medical expenses. In California, you can enroll in a high deductible HSA if yo...

Posted: April 8th, 2021 under Covered California Insurance

Do you need supplemental insurance? The short answer is yes. Supplemental insurance is used to complement insurance plans that provide basic medical coverage. Supplemental coverage often refers to supplemental dental insurance and supplemental vision insurance. It can also cover expenses that your primary plan doesn’t cover, like coinsurance, copayments or deductibles. 

If you have health insurance through your employer, you may think you don’t need to purchase supplemental insurance plans. Most people don’t realize their insurance is lacking until they receive a medical bill and find that a health care service isn’t covered.

Though many medical insurance plans leave much to be desired in the adequacy of their coverage, supplemental health plans like dental insurance and vision insurance can fill the gaps in your current coverage. 

Why is having dental coverage important? Maybe you see dental insurance as just another bill to pay, but in truth, dental insurance is worth the sma...

Posted: April 8th, 2021 under Covered California Insurance

After a year when health care remained top of mind across the nation, 2021 should be another year with the industry in the spotlight. The COVID-19 pandemic and its complications continue to be a source of concern. You can expect to see the emergence of changes in health care for 2021 helping the nation move forward. 

There are challenges to overcome in 2021, but some positive developments are likely to advance the medical field and empower Americans to receive a higher quality of health care from now on.

In 2021, some crucial hurdles will shape the health care industry. The pandemic’s ripple effects will continue to be a major focal point, as will health care reform considerations. 

For the health care industry as a whole and for individual Americans, COVID-19 will continue to be a chief concern, and rightly so. The COVID-19 crisis was all-consuming in 2020. Compared to the overwhelming effects the health care industry experienced last year, this year — which has already seen declin...

Posted: April 8th, 2021 under Covered California Insurance

Not sure how Obamacare affects your health care plans in California? Learn how the ACA works in California, including benefits, costs and enrollment.

Covered California is the Golden State’s official health exchange marketplace where individuals, families and small businesses can find high-quality, low-cost California government health insurance.

Learn about Obamacare income guidelines in California using our income limits chart, and see if you’re eligible for government assistance.

Learn about the Covered California website. Find easy online enrollment. Set up your account, log in, buy insurance and more on the California health marketplace website.