Health Care

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The Labor Center’s health care research aims to inform federal, state, and local policymaking to improve access to health coverage and make health care more affordable for workers and their families. Our research especially examines policy impacts for California low-income and immigrant working families and communities of color. Many of our publications include projections from the California Simulation of Insurance Markets (CalSIM) model, jointly developed with the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research.

Our factsheet for calculating Modified Adjusted Gross Income under the Affordable Care Act is available here.

Who is and isn’t insured, coverage affordability, job-based health coverage, the ACA, Covered CA, and Medi-Cal.

Affordability of coverage and care, underlying cost trends, and solutions.

Access to health coverage for immigrant families, undocumented Californians, and those with DACA.

California Simulation of Insurance Markets model projections, reports, and methodology.

Research & Publications

Miranda Dietzand Laurel Lucia

What’s at Stake for California Health Care Affordability in the Inflation Reduction Act?

The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) currently being considered by Congress would improve health care affordability for many Californians by addressing high and rising drug prices and by extending the improved premium affordability assistance to Covered California enrollees that began in 2021. The extension of federal premium assistance would also unlock additional state-financed affordability help to reduce how much Covered California enrollees pay out-of-pocket when they access care.

Miranda Dietz, Tynan Challenorand Srikanth Kadiyala

Fact Sheet: Fixing the Family Glitch in California — Projections from the California Simulation of Insurance Markets

Proposed federal regulations would fix the family glitch by extending subsidies to spouses and children offered unaffordable family coverage through an employer. The employee would still be excluded from subsidies if their cost for single coverage through their employer was affordable. We use the California Simulations of Insurance Markets (CalSIM) model to project for 2023 how many people would fall into the family glitch in California, how many would be newly eligible for a positive dollar subsidy, and how many would enroll in Covered California with subsidies under the family glitch fix.

Laurel Lucia, Tynan Challenorand Miranda Dietz

How will Californians’ health coverage sources change when the public health emergency ends?

The Medi-Cal redetermination process has been paused during the COVID public health emergency. As a result, many more individuals have newly enrolled in Medi-Cal than disenrolled, increasing Medi-Cal enrollment by almost 2 million since the beginning of the pandemic. This blog post summarizes (1) the available estimates of the potential reduction in Medi-Cal enrollment once the PHE is unwound and redeterminations have been completed, and (2) the likely eligibility for and enrollment in private coverage among those losing Medi-Cal.

Miranda Dietz, Laurel Lucia, Srikanth Kadiyala, Tynan Challenor, Annie Rak, Dylan H. Robyand Gerald F. Kominski

California’s biggest coverage expansion since the ACA: Extending Medi-Cal to all low-income adults

California has the opportunity to expand Medi-Cal to all low-income Californians, regardless of immigration status or age. This policy would result in a massive increase in coverage, bringing close to 700,000 undocumented Californians into coverage and reducing the uninsured rate for residents under 65 to just 7.1%, the biggest single improvement since implementation of the ACA.

Press Coverage