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California Health Insurance

Health insurance is normally available in two broad categories at present: individual and group. Individual insurance is usually for those who are self-employed, or are employed by a company that does not offer a health plan, or who have a family and who want individual insurance for their family members. When one purchases an individual plan, he/she is required to pay an annual premium as well as a deductible for each insured dependent, up to a base amount. If one buys a group policy, he/she has to pay an annual premium, co-payments payable at each medical service, and a deductible payable before insurance begins paying for his/her eligible medical bills.

In California, you can be denied individual insurance coverage because of a health problem (if you are not eligible with HIPAA) and there are no restrictions on the price of premium. If you are eligible with HIPAA, you cannot be rejected for individual insurance, cannot be given pre-existing condition exclusion periods, and have limitations on the cost of the insurance. And if you have continuous coverage without any lapse for more than 62 days, you are entitled to creditable coverage for the prior insurance by the new insurance company. Individual insurance cannot be cancelled if you fall sick.

In California, group health insurance cannot be turned down for a health problem, nor are you required to pay additional money, provided you qualify. Your group insurance cannot be cancelled if you fall sick. In case you have pre-existing conditions and have changed your job, you cannot be refused group insurance at a new job. However, you may have a limited time when the problem is excluded from insurance coverage. If you have unbroken prior coverage of 63 days or more, you will get creditable coverage.
Insurance companies are only allowed to review the six months preceding new coverage for any pre-existing conditions. Moreover, in the State of California, genetic information cannot be considered a pre-existing condition. HMOs can require a limited affiliation period or waiting period. In California, pregnant women enjoy additional rights.

Although the insurance company can charge a higher premium for group coverage if a group member is ill, a small business cannot be refused for small group health insurance because of any factors, health or otherwise. California permits a small business (staff strength from two to 50) or a business of any size to purchase group health insurance through a qualified, statewide alliance or trade association.

California does not allow a self-employed person to purchase group health insurance. As regards state insurance programs, the Major Risk Medical Insurance Program is available for a period of three years to those who cannot afford individual health insurance, due to a pre-existing condition. The Medi-Cal program helps people with limited incomes. There are also Healthy Families, and Access for Infants and Mothers programs that might prove useful for them.

As selecting the right health insurance quotes is not an easy job, you should do a good amount of homework before making your choice. It is better to appoint professional health insurance agents and brokers who are experts in this field.

Among the leading health insurance providers in California are Aetna, Assurant Health (formerly Fortis), Blue Cross of California, Blue Shield of California, Fairmont Specialty Group, Health Net, Kaiser Permanente of California, PacifiCare of California and Security Life.


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California and the uninsured

About 6.5 million non-elderly people are uninsured in California according to a guide published by the consumer group Communicating for Agriculture and the Self-Employed. That's 20.6 percent of the population, and higher than the national average of 17.2 percent (43 million total). Of the 50 states, only Minnesota is in single digits with 9 percent.




Health Insurance Groups working for all Californians

  • Health Access California - health care consumer advocacy coalition of over 200 associations and organizations working for the goal of quality, affordable, health care and health insurance for all Californians.

  • California Health Care for All - Promoting comprehensive universal health care using a single payer public finance mechanism. Changing to a universal health care system would save enough money to provide comprehensive coverage and greater benefits by covering everyone under one insurance plan. Health care services would still be delivered through both public and private providers.

  • A single payer bill, SB 840 (CHIRA) : Status of Universal Health Care Legislation in California at beginning of 2006, passed the California Senate and passed the State Assembly Health Committee by a vote of 9-4. The bill will be reconsidered when the State Assembly reconvenes in 2006. If it passes, the sponsors hope to have it on Governor Schwarzenegger’s desk by the fall of 2006. There are also plans to introduce a separate finance bill to fund SB 840.

  • A nonprofit which offers education and advocacy for Medicare recipients and pre-retirees- California Health Advocates


California population statistics from the US Census Bureau.

California Counties: Alameda County, Alpine County, Amador County, Butte County, Calaveras County, Colusa County, Contra Costa County, Del Norte County, El Dorado County, Fresno County, Glenn County, Humboldt County, Imperial County, Inyo County, Kern County, Kings County, Lake County, Lassen County, Los Angeles County, Madera County, Marin County, Mariposa County, Mendocino County, Merced County, Modoc County, Mono County, Monterey County, Napa County, Nevada County, Orange County, Placer County, Plumas County, Riverside County, Sacramento County, San Benito County, San Bernardino County, San Diego County, San Francisco County, San Joaquin County, San Luis Obispo County, San Mateo County, Santa Barbara County, Santa Clara County, Santa Cruz County, Shasta County, Sierra County, Siskiyou County, Solano County, Sonoma County, Stanislaus County, Sutter County, Tehama County, Trinity County, Tulare County, Tuolumne County, Ventura County, Yolo County, Yuba County.

California health insurance can be purchased in the following cities: Adelanto, Agoura Hills, Alameda, Albany, Alhambra, Aliso Viejo, Alturas, Amador City, American Canyon, Anaheim, Anderson, Angels Camp, Antioch, Apple Valley, Arcadia, Arcata, , Arroyo Grande, Artesia, Arvin, Atascadero, Atherton, Atwater, Auburn, Avalon, , Avenal, Azusa, Bakersfield, Baldwin Park, Banning, Barstow, Beaumont, Bell, Bell Gardens, Bellflower, Belmont, Belvedere, Benicia, Berkeley, Beverly Hills, Big Bear Lake, Biggs, Bishop, Blue, Lake, Blythe, Bradbury, Brawley, Brea, Brentwood, Brisbane, Buellton, Buena, Park, Burbank, Burlingame, Calabasas, Calexico, California City, Calimesa, Calipatria, Calistoga, Camarillo, Campbell, Canyon Lake, Capitola, Carlsbad, Carmel-by-the-Sea, Carpinteria, Carson, Cathedral City, Ceres, Cerritos, Chico, Chino, Chino Hills, Chowchilla, Chula Vista, Citrus Heights, Claremont, Clayton, Clearlake, Cloverdale, Clovis, Coachella, Coalinga, Colfax, Colma, Colton, Colusa, Commerce, Compton, Concord, Corcoran, Corning, Corona, Coronado, Corte, Madera, Costa Mesa, Cotati, Covina, Crescent City, Cudahy, Culver City, Cupertino, Cypress, Daly City, Dana Point, Danville, Davis, Del Mar, Del Rey Oaks, Delano, Desert Hot Springs, Diamond Bar, Dinuba, Dixon, Dorris, Dos Palos, Downey, Duarte, Dublin, Dunsmuir, East Palo Alto, El Cajon, El Centro, El Cerrito, El Monte, El Segundo, Elk Grove, Emeryville, Encinitas, Escalon, Escondido, Etna, Eureka, Exeter, Fairfax, Fairfield, Farmersville, Ferndale, Fillmore, Firebaugh, Folsom, Fontana, Fort Bragg, Fort Jones, Fortuna, Foster City, Fountain Valley, Fowler, Fremont, Fresno, Fullerton, Galt, Garden Grove, Gardena, Gilroy, Glendale, Glendora, Goleta, Gonzales, Grand Terrace, Grass Valley, Greenfiel, Gridley, Grover Beach, Guadalupe, Gustine, Half Moon Bay, Hanford, Hawaiian Gardens, Hawthorne, Hayward, Healdsburg, Hemet, Hercules, Hermosa Beach, Hesperia, Hidden Hills, Highland, Hillsborough, Hollister, Holtville, Hughson, Huntington Beach, Huntington Park, Huron, Imperial, Imperial Beach, Indian Wells, Indio, Industry, Inglewood, Ione, Irvine, Irwindale, Isleton, Jackson Kerman, King City, Kingsburg, La Canada Flintridge, La Habra, La Habra Heights La Mesa, La Mirada, La Palma, La Puente, La Quinta, La Verne, Lafayette, Laguna Beach, Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, Laguna Woods, Lake Elsinore, Lake Forest, Lakeport, Lakewood, Lancaster, Larkspur, Lathrop, Lawndale, Lemon Grove, Lemoore, Lincoln, Lindsay, Live Oak, Livermore, Livingston, Lodi, Loma Linda, Lomita, Lompoc, Long Beach, Loomis, Los Alamitos, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Los Angeles, Los Banos, Los Gatos, Loyalton, Lynwood, Madera Malibu, Mammoth, Lakes Manhattan, Beach, Manteca, Maricopa Marina, Martinez Marysville Maywood McFarland, Mendota Menlo, Park, Merced Mill, Valley, Millbrae, Milpitas Mission, Viejo Modesto, Monrovia, Montague, , Montclair Monte, Sereno, Montebello, Monterey, Monterey, Park, Moorpark, Moraga, Moreno, Valley, Morgan, Hill Morro, Bay, Mountain, View, Mt., Shasta, Murrieta Napa National, City, Needles, Nevada, City, , Newark, Newman, Newport, Beach, Norco Norwalk, Novato, Oakdale Oakland, Oakley Oceanside Ojai Ontario Orange, Orange, Cove, Orinda Orland Oroville, Oxnard, Pacific, Grove Pacifica, Palm, Desert, Palm, Springs Palmdale Palo, Alto, Palos, Verdes, Estates Paradise, Paramount, Parlier, Pasadena Paso, Robles, Patterson, Perris, Petaluma Pico, Rivera, Piedmont, Pinole, Pismo, Beach, Pittsburg, Placentia, Placerville, Pleasant, Hill Pleasanton, Plymouth, , Point, Arena, Pomona, Port, Hueneme Porterville, Portola Portola, Valley Poway Rancho, Cordova, Rancho, Cucamonga, Rancho, Mirage, Rancho, Palos, Verdes, Rancho, Santa, Margarita, Red, Bluff Redding, Redlands, Redondo, Beach, Redwood, City, Reedley, Rialto Richmond Ridgecrest, Rio, Dell, Rio, Vista, Ripon Riverbank Riverside, Rocklin Rohnert, Park Rolling, Hills, Rolling, Hills, Estates Rosemead, , Roseville Ross, Sacramento, Salinas San, Anselmo, San, Bernardino San, Bruno San, Carlos, San, Clemente San, Diego, San, Dimas San, Fernando San, Francisco, San, Gabriel, San Jacinto San Joaquin, San Jose San Juan Bautista, San Juan Capistrano, San Leandro San Luis Obispo, San Marcos, San Marino San Mateo San Pablo San Rafael San Ramon, Sand City, Sanger, Santa Ana, Santa Barbara, Sant Clara, Santa Clarita, Santa Cruz, Santa Fe Springs, Santa Maria, Santa Monica Santa Paula, Santa Rosa, Santee, Saratoga, Sausalito, Scotts Valley, Seal Beach, Seaside, Sebastopol, Selma Shafter, Shasta Lake, Sierra Madre, Signal Hill, Simi Valley, Solana Beach, Soledad, Solvang, Sonoma, Sonora, South El Monte, South Gate South Lake Tahoe, South Pasadena, South San Francisco, St. Helena, Stanton, Stockton, Suisun City, Sunnyvale, Susanville, Sutter Creek, Taft, Tehachapi, Tehama, Temecula, Temple City, Thousand Oaks, Tiburon, Torrance, Tracy, Trinidad, Truckee, Tulare, Tulelake, Turlock, Tustin, Twentynine Palms, Ukiah, Union City, Upland, Vacaville, Vallejo, Ventura, Vernon, Victorville,, Villa Park, Visalia, Vista, Walnut, Walnut Creek, Wasco, Waterford, Watsonville, Weed, West Covina, West Hollywood, West Sacramento, Westlake Village, Westminster, Westmorland, Wheatland, Whittier, Williams, Willits, Willows, Windsor, Winters, Woodlake, Woodland, Woodside, Yorba Linda, Yountville, Yreka, Yuba City, Yucaipa and Yucca Valley.


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