Covered California says President Biden's proposals would translate into lower health insurance premiums

Ed Walsh

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Covered California announces April 30 deadlineCovered California

Following President Biden's speech on Wednesday before a joint session of Congress Covered California’s executive director, Peter V. Lee, issued a statement on what it means for Californians.

“The American Families Plan would ensure lower premiums for millions of Americans for the long-term. The proposal would make permanent the new and expanded subsidies that are available right now, which stand to improve the lives of 2.5 million Californians and 25 million Americans

“Thanks to the leadership of President Biden and Congress, consumers are currently experiencing significant premium savings that will ease their financial burdens and allow them put money back into our economy. We have heard from a retired firefighter and his wife who will save $1,000 a month, a small business owner who will be able to expand his operations, and a family who says their savings mean they can put their children into a junior lifeguard program this summer.

“Making these savings permanent will help more Californians, and more Americans, get covered and stay covered during this pandemic and recession and beyond.

“While the American Families Plan will need to work its way through Congress, it’s important to note that Californians can get these savings now. Covered California is in the early days of a special-enrollment period, and this Friday marks the first deadline for consumers to sign up for coverage and begin saving.

“Many people will be able to get high-quality coverage for as little as $1 per month, while others will be able to save hundreds of dollars off what they are paying now. Do not miss out — the sooner you sign up, the sooner you can start saving and be covered. We don’t want any Californians to be uninsured or leave money on the table.”

Looming deadline

Covered California reminded all residents of the state that people have until April 30 to sign up for health insurance coverage through the Covered California plan.

“The new and expanded financial help provided by the American Rescue Plan can help people throughout the Bay Area get covered and stay covered by lowering their premiums and putting money back into their pockets,” said Peter V. Lee, executive director of Covered California. “The American Rescue Plan provides the most significant consumer cost savings since the Affordable Care Act began, but in order for many people to make the most of that savings, they need to act before the month ends.”

Who benefits from the American Rescue Plan?

Covered California estimates the new financial assistance can directly help 2.5 million Californians – including more than 450,000 people in the Bay Area – by lowering their monthly premium to levels never seen before.

New data from Covered California shows that an estimated 103,000 people in the Bay Area – which includes Alameda, Contra Costa, Lake, Marin, Mendocino, Napa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Sonoma counties – are uninsured and eligible for health insurance coverage through Covered California, with an additional 89,000 eligible for no-cost Medi-Cal. Covered California states that under the American Rescue Plan most of those eligible for Covered California would be able to get a plan from a trusted name-brand company – such as Blue Shield of California, Health Net, Kaiser Permanente and Chinese Community Health Plan – for as little as $1 per month, or a plan that offers richer benefits for less than $100 per month.

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