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Covered California hits record enrollment in 2024 despite rising rates

CBS News Live
CBS News Sacramento Live

SACRAMENTO - Covered California broke another record when it comes to enrollment for 2024, and they did it despite rates going up.

Almost 1.8 million people have enrolled through the health insurance marketplace -with 306,382 new enrollees and 1,478,271 renewing their coverage.

"It was just exciting and heartwarming [to see that] because that means more people are getting covered," said Jessica Altman, the executive director of Covered California.

Altman said more federal subsidies paired with the state's new cost-sharing revenue program helped break the record.

"We're now a decade in and I think more people are becoming familiar with the idea that 'Oh, if I lose coverage from another source, Covered California is who I call,' " she said.

The record number comes despite rates going up almost 10% this year. That said, those subsidies helped cover the cost for many. 

Rachel Linn Gish is with Health Access California and said most people wouldn't notice the increase.

"Some of the people that might see small increases are those at the higher income brackets," she said.

Covered California continues to expand, but if you ask them, they still have a long way to go.

"An estimated 1.3 million Californians who in 2023 were eligible for low or no cost coverage, either through medical or subsudies through Covered California, were still uninsured," Altman said. "So while we look at these numbers and say we've made a dent, we definitely still have work to do."

Open enrollment for Covered California is now closed, but people can still apply if they've had a life changing event, like a job loss or divorce.

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