Many Californians can get health insurance for $10 a month. Here’s the deadline to apply

·2 min read
Rich Pedroncelli/AP

Chances are good that you can get health insurance for $10 or less a month, according to Covered California, because two out of three Golden State residents qualify for premiums in that range in 2022.

Those rates are good through Monday, when open enrollment will end in California. After this, consumers can only sign up for insurance if they have a qualifying event such as a job loss, new baby or a marriage.

“We want to make sure that people who need health insurance are not caught up in the final week of last-minute shoppers,” said Peter V. Lee, executive director of Covered California.

A record 1.8 million Californians already have signed up, taking advantage of new federal financial help aimed at getting Americans health care coverage to help them weather the COVID-19 pandemic. The government assistance was part of multi-pronged stimulus package known as the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.

More than 7 million Californians have contracted COVID-19, and 80,000 state residents have died from the respiratory disease. The cost of treating a complex case of COVID-19 — one that requires ventilation or an admission into an intensive care unit — averages roughly $127,000, according to data from FairHealth.org, the nation’s largest repository of statistics on private health care claims.

“No one wants to end up in an emergency room or hospital for COVID-19 or for any other reason, but if you do, a health plan through Covered California provides financial protection and can save you tens of thousands of dollars,” Lee said.

If you sign up for a health care plan this month, coverage will begin on Feb. 1. In addition to online enrollment at CoveredCA.com, consumers also can call (800) 300-1506 or enroll through thousands of licensed agents or via many nonprofits with offices all around the state.

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