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Last Updated on December 16, 2021 by BVN

S.E. Williams

Over the last couple of years the COVID-19 pandemic and its Delta and Omicron variants have highlighted the importance of our health, and the value of comprehensive health coverage.

The American Rescue Plan  has made quality health care coverage more affordable than ever. This is largely due to the new and increased financial help included in the law that has dramatically increased the Affordable Care Act subsidies now available to Californians in nearly every income bracket. 

This makes it possible for more  consumers to get covered and stay covered with comprehensive, name-brand health insurance.

Now is the Time

If you or someone you know is uninsured, or has coverage directly from a health insurance company, now is the time to check out the health insurance options available through Covered California. 

Covered California is part of the Affordable Care Act, sometimes called Obamacare,  and it’s the only place you can go to get financial help to bring the cost of health care coverage within reach. 

Currently, an estimated 1.1 million Californians are uninsured and eligible for financial help. The overwhelming majority, about 940,000 people, are qualified for no-cost health care coverage through either Covered California or Medi-Cal. Even if you do not qualify for $0 health plans, many people can get health coverage for less than $10 per month.

Help for Middle Income Californians

Middle-income Californians who were previously ineligible, may now qualify for federal financial help to purchase health care due to the new provisions available through  The American Rescue Plan. 

For example, an estimated 260,000 Californians purchase their coverage directly from a health insurance company, without any financial assistance. They can switch to Covered California, and in many cases keep their same health plans and doctors, while also saving hundreds of dollars a month.

Benefits of Health Insurance

Health insurance protects individuals and families financially if an injury or illness results in a visit to the emergency room or hospital, while preventive care helps keep yourself and family members out of the hospital in the first place. This is especially important for African American communities which experience higher rates of chronic diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure, and other conditions that have also made them more vulnerable to the ravages of the coronavirus.

Enrolling for health care coverage is easy

To find out whether you are eligible for financial help and what your health coverage options are, visit Just enter your age, ZIP code, household income, and the ages of those who need health insurance and you can see your results right away. You can also call the Covered California’s Service Center at (800) 300-1506 to enroll in a health plan.

For those who sign up by Dec. 31, your health coverage will begin New Year’s Day 2022. If you miss that deadline, you have until the end of the open enrollment period on January 31, to sign up.

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S.E. Williams

Stephanie Williams is executive editor of the IE Voice and Black Voice News. A longtime champion for civil rights and justice in all its forms, she is also an advocate for government transparency and committed to ferreting out and exposing government corruption. Stephanie has received awards for her investigative reporting and for her weekly column, Keeping it Real. Contact Stephanie with tips, comments. or concerns at