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Screenshot of front page of Covered California's Spanish-language Web site.
California has hit its 2014 Obamacare enrollment targets, and a big part of that success is because of an uptick in Latino enrollments, who make up more than half of the state's uninsured population.
[Peter Lee, executive director of Covered California] said the exchange is making progress among Latinos after a disappointing start. He said 28% of enrollees last month identified themselves as Latino, compared with 18% for October through December.

Latinos represent more than half of the state's uninsured population, and many of them qualify for federal premium subsidies under the Affordable Care Act.

"We're glad to see increased momentum for enrollment in the Latino communities, but we still have work to do," Lee said.

Some health-law supporters have sharply criticized the exchange's Latino outreach efforts to date. They have faulted Covered California for having too few Spanish-speaking enrollment counselors in key areas, poor translation on its Spanish-language website and for not publishing a paper application in Spanish until late December.

Covered California said it would spend $8.2 million through March on Spanish-language advertising, up 73% from what it spent in the fourth quarter. The state is hiring more bilingual call-center employees and looking to host more enrollment events at Latino supermarkets in Southern California.

The Commonwealth Fund reported that, nationally, only 19 percent of Latinos have looked for insurance on a health exchange; only 20 percent of blacks and 28 percent of whites have shopped for a plan. About a third of Latinos in the country are uninsured, so outreach is critical. There are some real barriers, including fear of deportation. If one member of a household is undocumented, that family is less likely to get everyone else signed up for fear of disclosure. Lack out awareness is a huge barrier, as is the slow rollout of Spanish language exchanges and information.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Thu Feb 20, 2014 at 11:47 AM PST.

Also republished by California politics and Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (10+ / 0-)

    "The NSA’s capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything. [...] There would be no place to hide."--Frank Church

    by Joan McCarter on Thu Feb 20, 2014 at 11:47:19 AM PST

  •  over time, this will be a huge help to CA (6+ / 0-)

    given that a majority of the children and infants in california are latinos, many uninsured. there will be big political consequences as well, but just the public health aspect is huge. to give just one example, one big reservoir of unvaccinated kids in the state (other than the affluent white idiots in the bay area) are poor latino immigrants in the central valley with limited access to health care. if those kids get their shots, that herd immunity makes the whole state less likely to have preventable epidemics like whooping cough or measles, and should put a dent into the annual flu season.

  •  There is a movement among Latino organizations... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DarthEVaderCheney, 207wickedgood

    ...and legislators lead by CA-Se. Ricardo Lara to amend Obamacare in California through an "innovation" waiver to include undocumented.  

    The problem is that many Latinos have never had health insurance and the learning curve is steep for them.  In addition, only now there is a growing number of bilingual advocates.  But it is getting better.

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Fri Feb 21, 2014 at 03:02:05 PM PST

  •  This is excellent news and (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Fonsia, sajiocity

    DEBUNKS everything the right wing loonies are espousing.  PPACA is going to CONTINUE to be a successful program and join Social Security and Medicare as social programs!

    •  No, it's what they were really afraid of (0+ / 0-)

      Having all these strange looking, funny talking people with insurance? Having insurance that the RWNJs don't understand might mean the insured are human and deserve it.  
      The world is changing is front of me aaaaarrrrrggghh!

      "Takes more than guns to kill a man" Joe Hill

      by sajiocity on Fri Feb 21, 2014 at 06:25:48 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  They are having website issues lately (0+ / 0-)

    The enrollment part of the Covered California website has been out of action for several days. Don't know what their issue is, but it is apparently serious.

  •  CalCare having trouble. (0+ / 0-)

    Cal Care has been having trouble. One of the problems has been their list of Doctors. I chose ANTHEM - because I wanted to keep my Doctor. After getting the coverage - it turns out my Doc doesn't take Anthem.

    KPIX did a story.

    KPIX Calcare Doctor's list

    Additionally, for some strange reason - back when I signed up in December - I was initially REFUSED and told I had to prove my citizenship.

    I have a hispanic surname.

    I scanned and enter our passports. And was STILL refused.

    Finally called and got a human - and they said "Oh... yeah, it's some kind of error - no, I can see your passports - you're fine. Don't know why it kicked you out."

    The GOP Prime Directive: Be Silent - Consume - DIE!

    by Lance Bearer on Fri Feb 21, 2014 at 04:08:24 PM PST

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