Campus members are urged to remind students that open enrollment for health care coverage with Covered California — a health care option for uninsured students and others — ends Sunday, Jan. 31, after which those who remain uninsured must pay a tax penalty.
Covered California is a program for qualified legal residents and their families to compare health insurance plans and enroll in a plan that best fits their needs. Once open enrollment closes, students may only enroll in a health plan if they have a qualifying life event that makes them eligible, such as losing health coverage, getting married, moving outside the plan’s coverage area, having a baby, or turning 26.
The number of uninsured CSU students has been reduced significantly to fewer than 10 percent from 25 percent with the new health coverage options, according to Cal State Los Angeles professor Walter Zelman, who spearheaded the Health Insurance Education Project that educates CSU students about health care reform and coverage enrollment. With the expansion of Medi-Cal and the affordability of Covered California plans, quality health insurance is more accessible to CSU students.
Interested students and their families may visit CoveredCA.com or call 800-300-1506 for guidelines on financial assistance, as the federal government may support a portion of the health insurance premium based on income. Covered California also offers free assistance with enrollment in multiple languages, including Spanish.