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Medi-Cal Insurance

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About Medi-Cal Health Plans

Medi-Cal is California’s Medicaid program. This is a public health insurance program which provides needed health care services for low-income individuals, including families with children, seniors, persons with disabilities, foster care, pregnant women, and low income people with specific diseases such as tuberculosis, breast cancer or HIV/AIDS. Medi-Cal is financed equally by the State and federal government. Medi-Cal offers 21 managed care health plans, some of which are also offered by Covered California. Your choices depend on the county in which you live.

What is Medi-Cal?

Medi-Cal offers free or low-cost health coverage for California residents who meet eligibility requirements. Most individuals who apply through Covered California and enroll in Medi-Cal will receive services through health plans, similar to most of the health coverage options available through Covered California. On January 1, 2014, California expanded Medi-Cal eligibility for some low-income adults. When you complete a Covered California application, your application will be automatically reviewed for Medi-Cal eligibility.

What Does Medi-Cal Cover?

All of the health plans offered through Covered California or by Medi-Cal include the same comprehensive set of benefits known as “essential health benefits.” Essential health benefits consist of:

  • Outpatient (Ambulatory) services
  • Emergency services
  • Hospitalization
  • Maternity and Newborn care
  • Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder Services, including Behavioral Health Treatment
  • Prescription Drugs
  • Programs such as physical and occupational therapy (known as Rehabilitative & Habilitative Services) and devices
  • Laboratory services
  • Preventive and wellness services & chronic disease management
  • Children’s (Pediatric) services, including oral and vision care

Who Pays for Health Services Provided by Medi-Cal?

For many individuals who enroll in Medi-Cal, there are no premiums, no co-payments, and no out of pocket cost. Some households will see affordable costs, such as a low monthly premium. For some Medi-Cal kids, the premium is only $13 per child. In general, individuals in Medi-Cal will get the same health benefits available through Covered California at a lower cost.

Who’s Eligible for Medi-Cal?

To be eligible, your annual income must be 138 percent of the federal poverty level or less (in 2020 that would mean an individual who earned $16,395 or less). For a family of four, your annual income must be $33,534 or less.

You can also get Medi-Cal if you are:

  • 65 or older
  • Blind
  • Disabled
  • Under 21

Why Do People Choose

  • Pregnant
  • In a skilled nursing or intermediate care home
  • On refugee status for a limited time, depending how long you have been in the United States
  • A parent or caretaker relative or a child under 21 if:
    • The child’s parent is deceased or doesn’t live with the child, or
    • The child’s parent is incapacitated, or
    • The child’s parent is under employed or unemployed
  • Have been screened for breast and/or cervical cancer (Breast and Cervical Cancer Treatment Program)

What Are the Benefits of Medi-Cal?

Medi-Cal gives you benefits similar to those of Covered California, but often at lower or no cost to you and your family.

How Do I Apply for Medi-Cal?

You can apply by mail, in person at a County Social Services Office, or online. Find out if you qualify for free health insurance or you can get a free health insurance quote online to see your cost.