Covered California urges uninsured residents to purchase health coverage amid skyrocketing omicron


SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KRON) – As the omicron COVID-19 variant continues to spread statewide, Covered California urges uninsured and eligible people to act now to ensure they have comprehensive coverage health care for 2022.

California’s first open enrollment deadline covered is this week – California residents must enroll by December 31 for their health care coverage to take effect on January 1.

“Covered California urges everyone in need of coverage to check their options and register before the end of the month, so they can start the New Year with protection and peace of mind,” said Peter V . Lee, executive director of Covered California.

“The COVID-19 pandemic continues to underscore the fact that life can indeed change in an instant. With the omicron variant spreading statewide, every Californian should be sure to have coverage and take the necessary steps to stay healthy and safe. “

Californians who register before December 31 and pay their first bill will have their coverage effective January 1.

COVID-19 Hospitalizations in California Average $ 127,000 for Complex Care

A national nonprofit group recently analyzed claims data across the country and looked at COVID-19 cases in which patients were admitted to hospital and required ventilation or admission to the unit. intensive care unit (ICU), which is much more likely to occur among the unvaccinated. .

FAIR Health, which maintains the nation’s largest database of privately billed health insurance claims, found the average cost of a COVID-19 hospitalization in complex care to be $ 127,281 in California.

In cases where a patient needed to be hospitalized, but did not require ventilation or ICU admission – the average cost in California was $ 42,674, which is almost the same as the average cost for enrollees in California covered who are admitted to hospitals for a variety of reasons.

For patients who were diagnosed with COVID-19 and received only outpatient care – which is much more likely for people who were vaccinated and received their booster, the average cost in California was 1,334 $.

For those who have insurance, only a small fraction is paid directly by the consumer.

Table 1: COVID-19 Medical and Hospitalization Costs by State: California
Level of careEstimated average amount authorized
Complex hospitalized patient (Patient is admitted to hospital and requires ventilation or admission to intensive care unit [ICU])$ 127,281
Uncomplicated hospitalized patient (Patient is admitted to hospital but does not require ventilation or ICU admission)$ 42,674
ambulatory (Patient has been diagnosed with COVID-19 but does not require hospitalization)$ 1,334
Courtesy: Covered California.

“No one wants to end up in an emergency room or hospital for COVID-19 or for any other reason, but if you do, a quality health insurance plan through Covered California can save you tens of thousands. dollars, ”Lee said.

“Plus, having health insurance means you’re more likely to get preventative care and regular treatment for chronic illnesses, so you don’t have to be hospitalized in the first place.”

1 million uninsured Californians

According to Covered California, approximately 1.1 million Californians are uninsured and may qualify for financial assistance.

The vast majority of uninsured residents, over 940,000 people, can get free coverage through Covered California or Medi-Cal.

Courtesy: Covered California.

Check the eligibility and options offered by Covered California

Those interested in applying for coverage can explore their options – and find out if they’re eligible for financial assistance – using Covered California’s shopping and comparison tool.

In addition to registering consumers through its website, Covered California has also partnered with certified and licensed recruiters who provide free, confidential help statewide.

Covered California said it works with more than 11,000 licensed insurance agents, who have established more than 500 storefronts in communities across the state.

To find the nearest agent, click here.

Consumers can also call Covered California at (800) 300-1506 and get information or register by phone.

The California open enrollment period covered is until January 31, 2022, unlike the federal deadline, which is January 15 for states that use Healthcare.gov.

Consumers who register after December 31 will have their coverage begin on February 1.

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