Asian Americans Advancing Justice - LA

Building upon the legacy of the Asian Pacific American Legal Center

Covered California Begins Open Enrollment For Health Coverage

LOS ANGELES - Although the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has been under attack all year, it remains largely intact for 2018 and open enrollment for coverage under Covered California, the state’s marketplace for health coverage under the ACA, began on November 1, 2017.  Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Los Angeles (Advancing Justice-LA) urges all eligible California residents to enroll or renew now.
“It is important to know that California is very different from most other states because the state runs its own platform for health coverage separate from the federal marketplace. Because of that, federal dates and deadlines won’t affect Californians,” says Doreena Wong, Health Access Project Director at Advancing Justice-LA. “In California, the enrollment window is much longer and will go until January 31, 2018. For most states, the open enrollment period is just six weeks and will end on December 15, 2017. If you live outside California, the best thing to do is to look up the enrollment deadline for your state. And remember, there is no deadline to sign up for Medicaid, which is Medi-Cal in California.” 
The benefits of health coverage for Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) communities under the ACA are evident in their large enrollment numbers. Nationally, more than 530,000 AANHPIs who did not have health insurance before, are now covered under the ACA.  Asian Americans have seen a 59% reduction in their uninsured rate, dropping from 19.4% in 2010 to about 8% in 2015 – the largest reduction of any racial group nationally. In California, as of March 2017, over 242,000 AANHPIs enrolled or approximately 23.5% of the total enrollee population. 
Since 2013, Advancing Justice-LA and its Health Justice Network (HJN), a statewide collaborative of more than 60 community groups, health care providers, and small business groups across the state, have outreached to more than 2 million Californians about health coverage, enrolled or renewed over 5,000 eligible individuals into Covered California and assisted with over 15,600 Medi-Cal applications. As a Covered California Navigator grantee again this year, HJN will provide needed outreach, education and enrollment given the confusion over the status of the ACA and access to health care programs and services. 
“A significant portion of the uninsured are more likely to be limited-English proficient and from harder-to-reach populations, including immigrants and those who are unfamiliar with our health care system,” explains Wong. “To reach as many eligible Californians as possible, HJN  includes trusted community-based organizations and community clinics that have the cultural and linguistic expertise and the credibility to serve diverse ethnic groups in our community. We know that in-person, in-language assistance makes a huge difference in getting more people to enroll in, and use, health coverage.” 
There are several ways a person can apply for health coverage: 
  1. Get help from a Certified Enrollment Counselor. You can find one by contacting the Health Access Project at Advancing Justice-LA at (213) 241-0262 or at [email protected] or go to:
  2. Complete an application online at
  3. Call Covered California’s Service Center at 1-800-300-1506, or
  4. Complete and mail in the paper application (available in Chinese, Korean, Tagalog, Khmer, Vietnamese, and Hmong).
For more information about the current Open Enrollment Period, call Advancing Justice-LA at (213) 241-0262 or go visit:
Jessica Jinn, (213) 241-8817, [email protected]
About Advancing Justice - LA: 
Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Los Angeles is the nation’s largest legal and civil rights organization for Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders (NHPI). Through direct services, impact litigation, policy advocacy, leadership development, and capacity building, Advancing Justice-LA focuses on the most vulnerable members of Asian American and NHPI communities while also building a strong voice for civil rights and social justice.
Thursday, November 9, 2017
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