Senior Health Coverage
As a senior, you have many options to choose from for your health coverage. This section pulls together senior health related information all in one convenient location for you. The various senior health coverage options listed below describe some of their differences and offer links to resources for you. You should consider your personal needs and finances before making any choice.
The California Department of Insurance (CDI) regulates health plans underwritten by insurance companies. That means that some of your options, like Medicare, are not regulated by CDI and you will have to contact another agency if you need help with a problem or need assistance. We have listed contact information for each option, below.
Medicare is a federally funded insurance program for eligible participants 65 or over. Medicare has two parts, Part A (Hospital Insurance) and Part B (Medical Insurance). Medicare does not cover 100% of all costs. CDI recommends purchasing a Medicare Supplement Insurance policy if you have traditional Medicare to help offset your health care costs. If you have questions related to Medicare, contact Medicare or your local Department of Aging (HICAP).
Medicare Part D
(Prescription Drug Coverage)
Medicare Part D is a voluntary prescription drug program for Medicare beneficiaries. Prescription drug plans are sold by private companies but must be approved by Medicare. Before you purchase a prescription drug plan, it is important to make sure the one you are considering is approved by Medicare. Drug plans can have rules about what drugs are covered in different drug categories, so you should also make sure the plan you are considering covers any brand name drugs you are currently taking and wish to continue.
Information on Medicare Drug Plans can be found at Medicare's official website for Prescription Drug Coverage.
Additional information on Medicare Part D can be found at:
A non-profit organization sponsored by the National Council on Aging
This is a Medicare Part D program to assist certain low income individuals with the cost of prescription drug coverage.
Medicare Supplement Insurance
To purchase Medicare Supplement Insurance you must be enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B. Medicare Supplement Insurance (also known as Medigap) provides coverage for gaps in medical costs not covered by Medicare. Medicare Supplement plans are standardized and offer various benefits to help offset your healthcare cost.
The California Department of Insurance (CDI) regulates Medicare Supplement policies underwritten by licensed insurance companies. The CDI assists consumers in resolving complaints and disputes concerning premium rates, claims handling, and many other problems with agents or companies. The Consumer Hotline 800-927-4357 is serviced by experienced professionals who will answer your questions, or assist you in filing a complaint.
To find information on Medicare Supplement Insurance, the names of companies authorized to sell it and compare premiums, please visit our Guide to Medicare Supplement page.
Medicare Advantage is an alternative to traditional Medicare Part A and Part B. Medicare Advantage Plans are approved by Medicare, but are run by private companies that include Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs) or Preferred Provider Organizations (PPOs). If you have questions related to Medicare Advantage Plans, contact Medicare at 1-800-633-4227.
Medicare's official U.S. Government website
Additional information on Medicare Advantage Plans can be found at:
- California Health Advocates (Medicare Advantage Plans)
Medi-Cal is California's Medicaid program that provides health insurance for low-income individuals and families. Visit our Public Programs page for more information or the California Department of Health Care Services.