Interview with Maribel López, responsible for information and assistance services for seniors in Boyle Heights.
Lost Your Job and Health Insurance? What You Can Do to Keep Yourself and Family Insured in East LA.
There are alternatives in East LA to keep your loved ones covered, whether you are documented or not.
The coronavirus pandemic left more than half of LA County residents without jobs, many of which are right here in East LA. On a national level, almost 2 out of 10 people who lost jobs were Latino.
If you, like many others in East LA, lost your job and your insurance, you may be worried about how your family will get the medical care they need. Here’s what you can do to keep yourself and your family insured.
Connect with AHWM
Community Information Center
This team can help guide you with Covered California, Medicare, LA CARE, and Medi-Cal health insurance coverage plans that are right for you and your family. Our friendly bilingual counselors can take you step by step through the enrollment process, ensuring you receive the health care coverage you need. They could provide you assistance with Medi-cal, CCA, and Medicare. Contact phone number (323) 307-8937
Apply for Medi-Cal (State Sponsored Health Insurance)
Medi-Cal is California’s version of Medicaid for low-income residents. Whether you’re documented or undocumented, you can apply for Medi-Cal. However, undocumented immigrants over the age of 25 will only be entitled to pregnancy services, emergency services, and long-term care when necessary.
A new law, enacted in 2020, expands coverage to all income-eligible adults between the ages of 19 and 25, and that includes undocumented immigrants. So, if you are in this age range or you have a child in this age range, Medi-Cal coverage may be available if income criteria are met.
The income limit for Medi-Cal is $17,609 for individuals or less than $36,156 for a family of four.
Those who are eligible for full Medi-Cal will receive coverage for:
- Emergency services
- Ambulatory patient services
- Maternity and newborn care
- Prescription drugs
- Mental health and substance abuse services and treatment
- Laboratory services
- Rehabilitative and habilitative help
- Pediatric care, including vision and dental care
- Preventative and wellness services
When you apply for Medi-Cal, your application will be sent to the LA Human Services Agency. The county may contact you to provide more information, but you should receive a response within 45 days.
If you are eligible, you will receive a Medi-Cal benefits ID card, called BIC, in the mail. Along with your card, you will receive an information packet that explains your health plan options and how to enroll.
If you want to apply for Medi-Cal, contact L.A. Care at 1-888-452-2273. They can help you find programs that you may qualify for and guide you through the application process. If you apply through L.A. Care and you are approved, coverage will be free for your family. There will be no monthly premiums or co-pays to worry about.
Apply for Insurance Through Covered California
Covered California is the state’s health insurance marketplace. Because of the pandemic, California has expanded its open enrollment period through Covered California marketplace until June 2020.
All plans offered through Covered California include:
- Free screenings, immunizations, preventative care, well-woman services, and counseling and screening for children.
- Emergency care with no caps on the cost of care.
- Low deductible prescription drug coverage
- Chronic illness management
- Coverage for up to 100 home health service visits per year
- Durable medical equipment
Different plan levels are available: Platinum, Gold, Silver, and Bronze. Platinum is the most expensive plan, but it has the lowest deductibles. Bronze is the most affordable, but co-pays and deductibles are higher.
Plans under Covered California are only available to documented immigrants. You may need to provide documents showing your immigration status if your status can’t be confirmed electronically.
If you have lost your job and insurance because of COVID-19 or some other reason, you can keep your family covered through one of these options. If you do not qualify for Medi-Cal, you may find a low-cost plan through Covered California.
You can also find more trusted local services in your community at www.boyleheighstresources.org or download the Boyle Heights Resources app.