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Ensuring California's Future by Insuring California's Undocumented

May 27, 2014

Policy Brief

Authors: Enrico Marcelli, Manuel Pastor, Steven P. Wallace, PhD

​One group of residents who are an important part of our economy and society are explicitly excluded from the Affordable Care Act: the undocumented.

State legislation proposed to address this issue by expanding Medi-Cal and create a Covered California-style health marketplace to include undocumented immigrants stalled in the state Senate Appropriations Committee in May 2014, but alternative bills may surface in the near future. 

This policy brief focuses on the following questions:

  • What stands in the way of inclusion of all Californians because of policy design?
  • Who are the undocumented Californians left out of the reform?
  • How does access to medical insurance impact undocumented Californians and the state?
  • What does past experience suggest is the best way to reach this population?
  • Political considerations
The study includes 2014 California Simulation of Insurance Market (CalSIM) 1.9.1 and 2009 California Health Interview Survey (CHIS) data.

This research brief is based on a longer report that the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, USC Dornsife Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration, and San Diego State University expect to release in the summer of 2014.

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