October 19, 2017

California pushing to add more Latinos to Obamacare as Enrollment Lags

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By No Mas Hambre Staff February 18, 2014
People at event to inform people about the Affordable Care Act and donate turkeys to 5,000 needy families, in Los Angeles

People at event to inform people about the Affordable Care Act and donate turkeys to 5,000 needy families, in Los AngelesLatinos in California are signing up for Obamacare at a far lower pace than expected, prompting the state to push the program face-to-face in communities.

“California has led the nation in the successful implementation of Obamacare,” Daniel Zingale, senior vice president at the California Endowment, a Los Angeles-based health foundation, said. “By proving it can work here, that will be a beacon to the nation. On the other hand, if we stumble, that creates even more problems for the embattled law.”

Part of the problem lies with the mistrust of government by many immigrants who fear deportation as a result of sharing personal identifying information with the government.  Also, many low-income Latinos are weary of public assistance and how this could affect them later on for U.S. citizenship. To add further aggravation, problems on the website and a shortage of Spanish-speaking staff on the telephones for the programs hasn’t helped.

As of Dec. 31, only 20 percent of Obamacare enrollees were Hispanics.

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