Californians shopping for health insurance through the state's new marketplace will have a dozen options to choose from, officials announced Wednesday.
Covered California, the insurance exchange created under the new federal health care law, announced a list of insurance firms that have signed contracts to sell health plans on the exchange. The list includes major players like Anthem Blue Cross and Kaiser Permanente as well as smaller companies like Molina Healthcare and Chinese Community Health Plan.
Six of those firms will also offer insurance through the Small Business Health Options Program, a program aimed at helping small businesses offer insurance to employees.
Unlike Republican-led states that have resisted implementing the health care law, California has moved to erect a marketplace and passed legislation that will enroll more than a million new Medi-Cal customers.
It solicited competitive bids and negotiated with insurers on the plans to be offered through Covered California, where consumers will be able to comparison shop for health plans for lower-income Californians, with the help of a government subsidy. Wednesday's announcement marked the next step toward Covered California enrollment, which begins Oct. 1.
Call Jeremy B. White, Bee Capitol Bureau, (916) 326-5543. Follow him on Twitter @CapitolAlert.