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Two-Thirds of California's Seven Million Uninsured May Obtain Coverage Under Health Care Reform

February 1, 2011

Policy Brief

Authors: Shana Charles, Ph.D., M.P.P., Livier Cabezas, M.P.Aff.

Almost 4.7 million nonelderly adults and children of the seven million Californians who were uninsured for all or part of 2009 will be eligible for insurance as a result of last year's health care reform legislation, according to this policy brief, which uses data from the 2009 California Health Interview Survey. The authors calculate the number of Californians eligible to obtain coverage through the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and find a substantial portion of the uninsured will qualify either through Medi-Cal or (with or without subsidies) though the new California Health Benefit Exchange starting in 2014. The authors also examine the number of Californians likely to be left out of health care reform due to citizenship status.

This policy brief was funded by The California Endowment and The California Wellness Foundation.

NOTE: Due to a methodological revision, three numbers in this policy brief had to be slightly adjusted from an earlier version. Specifically, in Exhibit 1. the percent of Medi-Cal eligible changed from 42.6% to 42.9%. The percent of Exchange eligible with subsidies changed from 24.6% to 24.2%. The percent of Exchange eligible without subsidies changed from 17% to 17.1%. The changes do not affect the analysis in any way. The attached brief on these pages reflects the most recent version.

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