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'Unprecedented Financial Help' Is Available For Those Eligible Without Health Insurance

Signs for an urgent care, medical center, dental office and pharmacy jut out of the side of a brown stucco building. On the other side of the sidewalk are signs for a Metro bus stop.
Covered CA can provide low- to no-cost health insurance to those who qualify.
(Chava Sanchez
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Close to 600,000 people in the Southern California region are eligible for low- or no-cost health insurance through Covered CA, the state’s health insurance exchange.

Covered CA officials point out that eligibility has been expanded and that there's "unprecedented financial help" available, thanks to increased federal subsidies provided under the American Rescue Plan.

Peter Lee, executive director of Covered CA, says some Californians insured through the exchange — more than half of people enrolled — pay as little as $10 dollars a month. He also points out that going without insurance and relying on emergency room care can be risky and costly.

“If they are admitted to hospital, the charges are on average $43,000. Out of that though, the coverage they have means that they're only paying about $2,700 out of their pockets. Ninety percent-plus of the costs are being picked up by the insurance,” Lee said. “So, the benefits are big and the availability of financial support is bigger than ever.”

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For people interested in coverage beginning on Jan. 1, the deadline to enroll is Dec. 31. Otherwise, residents have until Jan. 31 to secure coverage for the 2022 year.

More information can be found at

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Corrected December 10, 2021 at 4:07 PM PST
An earlier version had the incorrect number of eligible residents and the deadline to enroll. LAist regrets the error.
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