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Towards Universal Health Coverage: Expanding Medi-Cal to Low-Income Undocumented

Publication Topics

California Health Interview Survey; Access to Health Care; Barriers to/Disparities in Health Care; 2011 California Health Interview Survey (CHIS 2011); 2012 California Health Interview Survey (CHIS 2012); 2013 California Health Interview Survey (CHIS 2013); 2014 California Health Interview Survey (CHIS 2014); 2015 California Health Interview Survey (CHIS 2015); 2016 California Health Interview Survey (CHIS 2016); Health Insurance Coverage and Programs; Medicaid/Medi-Cal; Uninsured; Low-Income; Racial and Ethnic Groups; Asian; Hispanic/Latino; Immigrant

Publication Type

External Publication

Publication Date


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<a onclick="OpenPopUpPage('{7AAD61FA-4BCB-48C0-B0B7-87AFDC3673EF}&ID=944&RootFolder=*', RefreshPage); return false;" href="{7AAD61FA-4BCB-48C0-B0B7-87AFDC3673EF}&ID=944&RootFolder=*">Laurel Lucia, MPP</a>

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Undocumented Californians are, for the most part, left out of the health insurance system. Undocumented residents make up the largest group of Californians who lack insurance — approximately 1.5 million are projected to lack insurance in 2020. The uninsured rate for low-income undocumented adults is particularly high: 90 percent of undocumented California adults with household income at or below 138 percent of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) lack insurance compared to 10 percent of all other California adults in the same income range in 2015-2016, according to findings from Six Facts About Undocumented Californians.

The rate of uninsurance for undocumented California adults is high for several reasons, including exclusion from full-scope Medi-Cal benefits under federal policy; ineligibility to buy insurance on Covered California because of immigration status; employment in industries/occupations that do not offer employer-sponsored insurance. Using CalSIM and other data, the study estimates 1.15 million undocumented in the state could gain health insurance in 2020 if the state expands Medi-Cal to all low-income adults regardless of immigration status, reducing uninsured population by as much as 25 percent.


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Report: Towards Universal Health Coverage: Expanding Medi-Cal to Low-Income Undocumented

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Press Release

Related Link 1

UC Berkeley Center for Labor Research and Education

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Related Link 3

Six Facts About Undocumented Californians

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California’s Health Coverage Gains to Erode without Further State Action

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Created at 2/5/2019 11:31 AM by i:0#.f|uclachissqlmembershipprovider|celeste
Last modified at 2/5/2019 2:00 PM by i:0#.f|uclachissqlmembershipprovider|celeste