California Health Care

Since the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency is no longer in effect, many programs that federal and state governments used to help individuals and families during the pandemic have also ended. Some of these programs, such as California’s Medi-Cal continuous coverage plan, helped ensure residents kept their Medi-Cal benefits during the crisis. Now that the pandemic is over and programs like the continuous coverage plan are “unwinding,” many Californians are being redetermined as ineligible for Medi-Cal and needing to switch to a new health insurance plan under Covered California.

If you’re one of the many transitioning from Medi-Cal to a Covered California health plan, keep reading. We’ll explore the unwinding of the continuous coverage plan and what you need to do to stay covered.

In short, the federally declared COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE) led California to create a plan to help residents maintain health insurance benefits during the crisis.

It began in January 2020 ...

Posted: November 15th, 2023

Dental insurance is a lot like your health plan — you pay a monthly premium and visit a dentist in your network. Just like health insurance, dental insurance can reduce your overall expenses and help you catch problems early. It also supports more than a beautiful smile. Dental care protects your general health and reduces the risk of conditions like heart disease.

Dental insurance usually covers the total cost of preventive services, like routine exams and cleanings. If your dentist determines you need to get work done, you can expect to pay a deductible and a portion of the procedure.

Each dental insurance plan is different. Before you see a dentist, review your policy and find out how much you’ll have to pay out-of-pocket. It also helps to ask your dentist for an estimate before you get treated so you know what to expect.

The following terms can help you understand your dental insurance plan:

Dental insurance is usually available through an employer or health insurance exchange....

Posted: November 8th, 2023

Long-term care is essential for many Californians, regardless of insurance status. This type of care goes beyond medical attention, and includes daily help with everyday tasks. It’s important to understand the ins and outs of long-term care, including the fact that individuals of any age may need this support. Explore the details about long-term care, including what it is, who needs it, criteria for this care and coverage options to consider.

Long-term care focuses on daily support for those with disabilities, illnesses or cognitive impairments. This type of care can include many services, from help with basic personal tasks to specialized medical attention. Overall, long-term care goes beyond traditional medical care to ensure individuals can maintain their dignity and a high quality of life.

While short-term care concentrates on acute medical requirements, long-term care recognizes the need for more specialized care that considers the bigger picture of an individual’s health and w...

Posted: November 1st, 2023

Medicare is a popular health insurance option for older adults, with 18.4% of the U.S. population choosing Medicare coverage. As an older adult, you know how critical health care is for your peace of mind and quality of life. Medicare supplement plans can be a significant advantage in helping you navigate gaps in your Medicare coverage.

There are many reasons to choose a Medicare Supplement plan, and many options to suit your unique lifestyle and requirements. Before you decide whether a supplement plan is right for you, it’s best to understand your options and what benefits you can expect.

Medicare Supplement health insurance — or Medigap — is additional insurance you can purchase from a private health insurance company. As the name suggests, it helps you fill your coverage gaps in your policy by paying toward your portion of out-of-pocket costs in Medicare. In other words, supplemental health insurance lets you go beyond your primary medical coverage and seek the treatment yo...

Posted: October 25th, 2023

A waiting period in health insurance typically refers to the time between beginning a new job and waiting for your benefits to take effect. They can be frustrating and impact coverage, even resulting in fines in some states if you’re not careful.

A health insurance waiting period can refer to more than one thing, such as:

Employees have to wait a little while before they can use their benefits after starting a new job or enrolling in a different plan. The waiting period refers to the length of time when the employee doesn’t have access to some or all of their benefits. Not every employer has a waiting period, but many make employees wait up to 90 days before accessing health coverage. Fortunately, the government ensures the waiting period is no longer than that — 90 days is the maximum amount.

Many things affect your waiting period, including your insurance carrier, insurance plan and employer. Always check for a waiting period before accepting a new position. You typically can’t...

Posted: October 18th, 2023

Imagine waking up one morning with a throbbing headache and a persistent cough. You’re unsure if it’s just a common cold or something more concerning. That’s when you realize the importance of having a primary doctor by your side. But what exactly does a primary doctor do?

Let’s explore the crucial role of primary doctors, learn the distinctions between primary care and family doctors and discuss why having a primary care doctor is essential for your well-being. From diagnosing and treating common illnesses to managing chronic conditions and promoting preventive care — they play a vital role in keeping us healthy.

A primary care physician (PCP) is a doctor who specializes in providing primary care services and plays a crucial role in keeping you healthy. They’re the go-to doctor for your everyday medical needs. PCPs look at the bigger picture. They don’t just treat symptoms, they focus on your medical history, lifestyle and overall well-being. This means they manage your...

Posted: October 11th, 2023

Experiencing a job transition can bring uncertainties, particularly when considering insurance coverage. There is valuable assistance available to California residents facing such situations. With promising ways to secure health insurance in any circumstance, you can seek help even without current employment. You may be able to maintain your existing work-related insurance or explore the options offered by state programs.

Learn more about your coverage options so you can make informed decisions about your health insurance during career shifts.

If you’ve lost your job, you are likely trying to determine the status of your health insurance coverage. The kind of insurance you usually get from work might disappear, leaving you and possibly your family without a safety net for medical needs.

Once you’re in this situation, figuring out what to do about health insurance is important. You may be able to stick with your old work insurance using something called COBRA. Signing up for state in...

Posted: October 4th, 2023

Many individuals who reach the age of retirement wonder if they can choose private health insurance over federally funded Medicare. Explore how private health insurance works and whether you can have Medicare and other forms of coverage simultaneously. If you still want to work after age 65, consider whether you can enroll late in Medicare and the penalties for late enrollment.

Private health insurance is often provided to individuals through their employer or federally approved providers from the Marketplace. Some private companies are Medicare-approved, meaning you can find coverage through a private institution with many of the benefits that Medicare provides.

A Medicare-approved private insurance company offers assistance with Medicare costs, including coinsurance, copayments and deductibles. It covers parts of prescription drugs and benefits like dental, vision and hearing care.

Medicare offers health insurance to eligible individuals over the age of 65. Those who sign up often rec...

Posted: September 27th, 2023

Planning a wedding, getting married and going on a honeymoon are unforgettable milestones. As you begin your new life with your spouse, plan for post-wedding needs like managing your finances and health insurance. You have several options and decisions regarding your health insurance after getting married. Will you join your spouse’s plan, keep your coverage separate or get a new plan altogether?

Understanding what considerations to make will allow you and your spouse to make the best and most cost-effective decision for your new family.

Outside a qualifying life event, you can typically only enroll in a new health plan during the open enrollment period, which often runs over the fall and winter months each year. However, marriage qualifies for a special enrollment period that allows you to sign up for coverage at other times of the year. The SEP allows you to change your health plan within 60 days after your wedding.

Getting health insurance for newlyweds can happen relatively quick...

Posted: September 20th, 2023

The birthday rule insurance policy is used by many health insurance companies that want to provide consistency and coordination of benefits across various policies. For parents with a child listed as dependent on both plans, understanding the birthday rule can help them determine who is responsible for payments. Explore what the birthday rule for insurance means and what exceptions might apply.

The birthday rule for insurance helps parents and health plans determine which policies are responsible for payments. The rule was created by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) and is used by many insurance companies today. It applies to children listed as dependents on both parents’ insurance policies.

According to the birthday rule, primary coverage is given by the parent’s plan whose birthday comes before the other. While birth years are not considered, the day and month of a parent’s birthday determine the coverage. The parent whose birthday comes second in the...

Posted: September 13th, 2023

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.