Individual Health Insurance: How will Covered California make it easier for me to compare different health plans?

Covered California is a health insurance marketplace, which will make it easier individuals to compare an array of qualified health plans from private insurance companies. The marketplace will allow you to shop for individual health insurance through Covered California exchanges online, over the phone or in person to select the perfect insurance option for your budget and health needs.

How will Covered California allow me to compare individual health insurance plans?

There will be four levels of coverage offered:

  • Bronze
  • Silver
  • Gold
  • Platinum

With the increase in ranking, the medical expenses covered in each category go up, with platinum being the highest ranked, making it compare plans in the same category or across categories.

For expenses happening at the time of receiving health care services – doctor visits or emergency room trips, for example, the health plans covering more medical expenses tend to have lower costs when receiving care but a higher monthly payment.

You can choose to pay a lower monthly cost and pay more when you need medical care, or a higher monthly cost so that when medical care is needed, you pay less. You are able to choose the level of coverage that best suits your personal budget and needs.

Finding the perfect individual health care insurance plan can be confusing. For more information about how individual insurance through Covered California can benefit you and your family, contact the Redlands insurance experts at Bernardini & Donovan Insurance Services.

Covered California SHOP Exchange

Starting in January, 2014, the Covered America SHOP (Small Business Health Options Program) will help California small businesses provide affordable small group health insurance for their employees through the program’s small business health insurance marketplace. The SHOP exchange will make it easy to offer employees a large selection of health plans generally only available to larger employers.

Small-business owners may enroll in the Covered California plans beginning on October 1, when the exchange is launched, for coverage effective Jan. 1, 2014. Depending on which of the 19 pricing regions they reside in, employers and employees will be able to choose between 3 or 4 carriers. SHOP plan choices will have good provider networks, a standardized set of benefits and a choice of insurers at competitive prices.

While rates will vary based on the region, the premiums for Covered California SHOP insurance coverage is fairly comparable to 2013 small-group market rates, which can possibly save small businesses money. There are four levels of health insurance plans offered under Covered California — Platinum, Gold, Silver and Bronze. Small-business owners will be able to shop online through the exchange to compare available coverage options for their employees.

Employers will be able to choose the best fitting coverage level, then choose the anchor plan that suits their budget. For more information about choosing the best level and anchor plan for your small business, contact the Redlands, California insurance experts, Bernardini & Donovan Insurance Services , today.

How Covered California Will Support your Small Business

Like many small business owners, you probably have questions about Covered California and how it can provide insurance coverage for you and your employees. Covered California is a marketplace developed specifically for small businesses with up to 50 qualified employees.

The marketplace, also called the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP exchanges) will make it easier to compare a variety of competing high-quality, qualified health plans from private insurance companies, including small group health insurance plans similar to those offered to large businesses.

Covered California will support your small business by:

  • Providing Control. You will be able to choose if or when to participate in Covered California, and to determine your own level of contribution toward your employees’ coverage.
  • Expanding Employee Options. You will be able to offer your employees their Qualified Health Plan choice from several insurance companies.
  • Simplifying Options. Covered California will offer the ability to compare health plan benefits, quality and premiums side-by-side.
  • Making Insurance Affordable. Covered California spreads insurers’ administrative costs, sharing them between more employers. Additionally, if you have less than 25 employees, you may qualify for small business tax credits.

Offering your employees high-quality health insurance, keeping them healthier, happier and more productive is a competitive advantage in the labor market. For more information about how Covered California can benefit your small business, contact the Redlands insurance experts at Bernardini & Donovan Insurance Services.

Individual Health Insurance: Covered California Opened for Enrollment Today

If you don’t have insurance through your employer you will need to get coverage by January 1, 2014. Covered California, the new health insurance exchange operating throughout the state, will function as a marketplace through which you can compare insurance plans available to you and find the coverage you need. Covered California opened for enrollment today, October 1, 2013, to set plans in place that will begin on January 1, 2014. Failure to establish insurance for the next year may lead to fines or penalties.

Many California residents don’t have insurance because they believe it will be too expensive, but under the changes made by the Affordable Care Act insurance coverage will become far more reasonable for everyone. There are also federal programs available to support those that simply cannot afford their medical coverage.

Covered California will be serving anyone who is a resident of the state. Insurance can no longer be denied to anyone due to previous health conditions, and essential health benefits are required to be available in all plans regardless of their cost. For more information about how an exchange works and how to use exchanges to find individual health insurance contact the insurance experts at Bernardini & Donovan Insurance Services.

Covered California Health Insurance Exchange: Applying for Coverage

Starting October 1, 2013, Covered California will become the primary marketplace for individual health insurance coverage. The market will feature tools which will allow insurance consumers to compare policies that offer affordability to low-income individuals and families. Services include free health insurance or significantly reduced health insurance for qualifying individuals and families.

For those who wish to apply for coverage, Covered California can be initiated by phone, online, or through a licensed agent. Applicants should expect to talk with a Covered California call center representative who will screen the applicant for qualification. If qualified, the call is transferred to a county representative for completion.

Income verification if through the IRS and the exchange will use the applicants last filed IRS return to verify income as an estimation of income. Applicants can prove income by showing documentation of major changes in income levels for the current year.

Covered California is part of the health insurance exchange for California residents and helps to ensure that all Californians are covered with health insurance.

Bernardini & Donovan Insurance Services provides insurance policies to the people of San Bernardino County, the City of Redlands, CA  and the State of California. If you have questions about insurance or the Covered California program, please contact Bernardini & Donovan Insurance Services.


Covered California Health Insurance Exchange: What Kind of Coverage Will you be Getting?

If you want or need to get insured, Covered California has options for health insurance. The exchange has been created to comply with the health insurance changes that are taking effect in 2014. Under the exchange, people will get individual health insurance coverage, there will be 13 commercial health plans, and more than 80% of practicing physicians and acute care hospitals will be participating. The plans provided cover doctor visits, hospital stays, prescriptions, and more. They also avoid many of the gimmicks of same plans that were seen in the past.

The out-of-pocket cost is capped at a maximum of $6,350, which will reduce the risk of people going bankrupt because of large medical bills. Without the proper insurance, this possibility is still very real. The list of current insurers is only for individual health insurance coverage, but options will also be available for small businesses to work with the health insurance exchange in order to cover their employees in the near future.

For more information on the health insurance coverage provided by Covered California in the Redlands, CA area and throughout CA, please contact Bernardini & Donovan Insurance Services today.


Covered California: The New Individual Health Insurance Marketplace

The healthcare system in the United States is undergoing  changes. Covered California is the new individual health insurance marketplace, which impacts individuals and families purchasing their own insurance. This new marketplace is designed to increase the quality and affordability of health coverage.

In 2014, major changes to health insurance regulations take effect. Health insurers can no longer deny coverage to individuals with pre-existing conditions. New federal subsidies will also be available to help individuals and families purchase qualified health insurance plans. All health plans, including those in the Covered California marketplace, will be required to meet a standard set of essential requirements.

These changes will help an estimated 4.7 million Californians improve the quality of their health insurance. There are four tiers of qualified health plans in the Covered California marketplace: platinum, gold, silver and bronze. Each tier varies in terms of the level of coverage and monthly premiums. Catastrophic coverage is also available to individuals under 30 years old.

Changes in health insurance are coming in 2014. For more information about the Covered California health insurance exchange, please contact Bernardini & Donovan Insurance Services, located in the Redlands, CA area.


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