3M California Residents Applied, Enrolled Through Exchange
More than three million California residents have applied for or already have enrolled in private health plans or Medi-Cal through Covered California, the state health insurance exchange announced on Thursday, Capital Public Radio's "KXJZ News" reports.
Medi-Cal is California's Medicaid program (Bartolone, "KXJZ News," Capital Public Radio, 3/13).
As of the end of February:
- Nearly one million state residents have newly enrolled in private coverage through the exchange;
- About 1.1 million were determined to likely qualify for Medi-Cal coverage through the exchange (Covered California release, 3/13); and
- Hundreds of thousands of additional residents have applied for coverage but have not yet completed enrollment ("KXJZ News," Capital Public Radio, 3/13).
Of the residents who likely are eligible for Medi-Cal, about 968,500 already have enrolled in such coverage, including 650,000 who formerly were enrolled in the Low-Income Health Program.
About 38% of residents who were found likely to be eligible for Medi-Cal, or 431,680 individuals, identified as Latino. In addition, about 35% of new Medi-Cal beneficiaries are between ages 18 and 34.
Details of Private Enrollment
For a detailed overview of private enrollment through Covered California, see today's Capitol Desk post.
Of the individuals who had selected private coverage through Covered California as of Feb. 28:
- 276,063, or 39.5%, identified as white;
- 160,270, or 22.9%, identified as Asian;
- 153,561, or 22%, identified as Latino;
- 90,925, or 16.7%, identified as another race or did not know their race; and
- 18,297, or for 2.6%, identified as black or African-American (Covered California release, 3/13).
Of those who chose private plans:
- 30.5% of consumers selected plans by Anthem Blue Cross;
- 29.2% selected plans by Blue Shield of California;
- 18% selected plans by Kaiser Permanente;
- 17.6% selected plans by Health Net; and
- 3.3% selected plans by other insurers ("KXJZ," Capital Public Radio, 3/13).
The majority of enrollees selected bronze- or silver-level plans.
Toby Douglas, director of the state Department of Health Care Services, said, "It is evident by this tremendous response that many Californians have long been waiting for this kind of opportunity to get quality health care coverage."
To continue its outreach efforts, Covered California has planned nearly 650 enrollment activities across the state in the coming weeks before the open enrollment deadline on March 31.
Covered California Executive Director Peter Lee said that the exchange will continue to promote "both a short-term and a long-term, multi-year effort to change the mindset of the uninsured from a culture of coping into a culture of coverage" (Covered California release, 3/13).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.