Politics & Government

The Buzz: Give the gift of healthcare, Covered California suggests

Gift-givers urged to buy Obamacare for young adults

Forget the Xbox One, Ugg boots or that “Keep calm and kill zombies” hoodie.

California officials are urging you to consider gifting that special young adult in your life something a bit less tangible: Obamacare.

Covered California, the state health insurance exchange, on Thursday launched its “Give the Gift of Health” campaign aimed at families, principally mothers and grandmothers (for the latter, apparently, a $5 bill no longer cuts it). People can “pledge” to cover the cost of insurance.

Officials estimate roughly 1.8 million residents aged 18 to 29 are eligible to obtain health insurance through the exchange or qualify for free or reduced-price Medi-Cal, the government program for the poor and disabled. About 2.6 million Californians – many of them under 30 – will qualify for a federal subsidy reducing their monthly premium.

“Young adults tend to think that nothing will harm them,” said Claire Lipschultz, the mother of two 20-somethings and the state policy advocate for the National Council of Jewish Women-California. “Moms know you are healthy until you are not. So, be sure your loved ones are covered.”

– Christopher Cadelago


CalPERS’ governing board aims to increase its collective understanding of everything from financial statements to financial markets with a new set of “core competencies.” The policy requires board members to be familiar with issues ranging from health care to pension plans. “These criteria are designed to enhance the competency of the board and will help us better serve our members and employers,” Rob Feckner, president of CalPERS’ 13-member board, said in a statement.

– Jon Ortiz