Marivel Castaneda and Adrianna Rodriguez of the Riverside County Department of Public Services in partnership with Black Voice News shared information about MediCal (California’s version of Medicaid) unwinding to community members at the Civil Rights Institute of Southern California on Saturday, October 14.
The community outreach effort was in partnership with Black Voice News as part of the publication’s Pop-up Newsroom initiative, a new strategy designed to bring important news and information directly to members of the community at local events.
More than 15 million beneficiaries are at risk of being disenrolled from Medicaid nationally and more than 225,000 California residents having already lost their Medi-Cal coverage during this process due to several challenges such as not returning Medi-Cal renewal paperwork, not receiving their mail due to an address change, or benefit eligibility issues.
At least 439,000 households in Riverside County depend on Medi-Cal benefits and there are about 456,527 households in San Bernardino County subscribed to the health care service, making the need to understand the Medi-Cal unwinding process critical to the many inland area residents who rely on it for their health care coverage.
“We are out in the community helping individuals complete these packets, so they can retain benefits,” explained Castaneda, emphasizing the importance of making the registry window and being able to receive preventative care.
It is important that beneficiaries respond to renewal forms they receive in the mail indicating they need to submit information. They are required to complete and return the form as soon as possible in the pre-paid return envelope provided. The form can also be submitted online, in-person or by phone. The renewal process can take up to 90 days.
If a resident is no longer eligible for Medi-Cal, they should consider other affordable insurance options like Covered California, the free online marketplace for low-cost health insurance plans.
If you have questions or would like further support with this process visit the Riverside County Department of Social Services.