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Last month, Assemblyman Miguel Santiago (D-Los Angeles) introduced Assembly Bill 570, which would allow California residents to enroll dependent parents in their health insurance. Sponsored by State Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara, this bill will increase access to affordable healthcare for working families.
“Health care access for seniors was already an issue pre COVID-19, but now we see an even more urgent need,” Santiago said. “Millions of Californians have lost healthcare coverage. AB 570 will provide health coverage to more Californians by ensuring dependent parents, including undocumented immigrants, are covered. This will save working families a significant amount each year.”
Currently, children can be added as dependents to their parents’ health insurance coverage, but this protection does not extend to dependent parents. By requiring health insurance companies to offer dependent coverage to older adults, AB 570 will allow families to cap their out-of-pocket costs, thus reducing overall health care costs for working families.
“When we needed care as children, our parents were always there for us. Now that our parents need care, we should be able to add them to our health coverage,” Lara said. “Health insurance for young adults caring for dependent parents can be extremely costly if they become sick or lose their health coverage. The Elder Care Act will save money for many California families, especially during the current COVID-19 pandemic when so many people have lost their jobs and access to health care is even more crucial. By allowing adult children to add their dependent elders to their health insurance policies, this legislation will help to increase access to affordable health care.”
“AB 570 will help California families by ensuring adult children can enroll their dependent parents on their health plan,” said Anthony Wright, executive director of Health Access California. “This bill will help ensure real financial security for families, and provide better coverage options for financially dependent adults who struggle to afford insurance but don’t yet qualify for Medicare.”
“We are proud to support AB 570, which will offer adults a way to add their dependent parents to their health insurance coverage, regardless of immigration status. Finding affordable health coverage is a major worry for many adults, particularly for adults with undocumented parents,” said Kiran Savage-Sangwan, executive director of the California Pan-Ethnic Health Network. “Latinx people, who make up 40% of our state’s population, have been hardest hit by COVID-19. This pandemic has shown we can’t afford to leave anyone behind. Our health and our communities are interconnected, and protecting everyone is the equitable and just thing to do.”
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