Over 15.4 million Californians have Medi-Cal coverage, and, of California’s 6.4 million Medicare beneficiaries, 25% of them are dually eligible for Medicare and Medi-Cal. While Medicare is primary for these beneficiaries, Medi-Cal provides essential wrap-around coverage for Medicare’s gaps, including coverage for prescription drugs not covered by Medicare, hearing aids, dental care, ambulance services, nursing home care and long term care services and supports. Therefore making sure those dually eligible keep their Medi-Cal benefits through the upcoming eligibility renewals/redetermination process is key for their quality and continuity of care.
One of the best ways people can help ensure they keep their Medi-Cal is to make sure the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) can reach them. This will prevent any lapse in coverage. DHCS’s webpage, Keep Your Medi-Cal, has three simple tips:
- Update your information – See the webpage, Keep Your Medi-Cal, for specifics on where to update your information.
Log into your account to make sure Medi-Cal has your current:
- Sign up for updates – You can sign up for updates on Medi-Cal renewals via email and/or text on the webpage, Keep Your Medi-Cal.
- Check your mailbox – Counties will mail you a letter about your Medi-Cal eligibility. You may need to complete a renewal form. If you’re sent a renewal form, submit your information by mail, phone, in-person, or online, so you don’t lose your coverage.
Why are Medi-Cal renewals happening starting April 1?
During the COVID-19 public health emergency (PHE), the federal government temporarily waived Medicaid requirements for annual eligibility redeterminations. As a result, Medi-Cal members kept their health coverage continuously during the PHE. On December 23, 2022, Congress passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act, an omnibus funding package that separates the Medicaid continuous coverage requirement from the federal COVID-19 PHE and provides a fixed end date for the Medicaid continuous coverage guarantee – March 31, 2023.
For more information, see our previous article, Medicaid Continuous Coverage Ends March 31st.