Health care in California is a big point of discussion in current politics what with the complete overhaul that’s currently underway. This overhaul includes the Affordable Care Act, an act put in place to help ensure that more underprivileged individuals and families are granted access to affordable health care in their state. For some, this will have no effect; for others, it will be a big game-changer. Many small-business employers will now be able to offer healthcare more affordably to their employees, and there is now a standard for what certain health care companies can offer.
The current issue, however, lies in the fact that more than half of the population doesn’t know that they can now afford coverage.
A recent poll, called the Field Poll, surveyed uninsured, low-income voters who would technically be qualified candidates for health coverage. The poll found that more than 50% of these people either a) did not know that they qualified for health insurance, or b) believed that they did not qualify for health insurance. When participants who were qualified, but not under an employer, were surveyed, the percentage who did not know about their qualification was even larger.
Clearly, the state of California has an issue of awareness on its hands.
What can be Done / What is Being Done
It’s now up to the state agency who is behind the Obamacare overhaul to inform and educate the public about the fact that they may be newly qualified or able to get more affordable care. As of right now, advertising seems like one of the only options. Statewide, we may be looking at an investment of over $300 million that will go toward the endeavor of spreading the word about new health care. This will be in various forms – from door-to-door visits to online advertisements, all geared toward the uninsured and convincing them to take what’s theirs.
The issue, however, isn’t simply about awareness – it’s about understanding. Some 25% of the population knows nothing about the new Affordable Care Act. Another 60% consider themselves to be “somewhat knowledgeable.”
Since lack of healthcare is a huge issue in the United States, it’s important for California residents to be aware that they might qualify for policies with Health Net California or one of the many other reputable insurance agencies. Many citizens tend to tune out when they hear mention of “health care reform,” but since this plan is put in action to literally revolutionize the way that lower-income residents buy and use their health insurance – while making the stipulations more transparent and the competition and pricing more fierce – it’s an act that pertains to everyone. Do your research!