If you can’t afford to buy insurance on your own, you may be eligible for free or low-cost state insurance, particularly if you are a parent or are pregnant.
Even if you are childless, you should still check to see if you qualify, as a few states provide coverage to adults without dependent children. Some states also allow families who make too much to qualify for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) to buy coverage through these programs by paying a small premium.
In California, a young adult with one child earning less than $1,336.48 per month can qualify for Medicaid coverage. Pregnant women earning less than $2,521.67 a month generally qualify as well.
A new program in LA County provides health care coverage through county-based Low Income Health Programs to adults who do not qualify for Medi-Cal under the usual rules: Non-pregnant adults between ages 19 and 64 who are not enrolled in Medicaid or CHIP and have incomes at or below 133% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) ($14,484 for an individual in 2011)(or a lower threshold set by the county) and 200% FPL ($21,780 for an individual in 2011).