Thoughts On Financing Care And Coverage For Those Who Are Uninsured and Ineligible for Covered California and Full Scope Medi-Cal Due To Their Immigration Status

October 10, 2014

At least half of California’s undocumented residents are uninsured, while the others are covered through their employers, and to a lesser degree, through state limited benefit programs. The undocumented are ineligible for Covered California, and eligible only for limited scope Medi-Cal that covers genuine emergencies and maternity care. This report examines alternatives to covering and caring for the undocumented in California.

The challenge for California is to assure care to an undocumented working population that is not evenly distributed throughout the state, but rather most heavily concentrated in the Central Valley, the Central Coast and Southern California counties. There are several approaches to financing care and coverage for the undocumented. First, their care could be covered by California’s county safety nets. Second, they could be covered by the state of California. Third, they could be covered by their employers or by private individually purchased coverage. Fourth, their care could be partially funded by the federal government. Lastly, we could consider hybrid programs and shared responsibility.

Download the brief here.