Health

Covered California goes on a bus tour to tell people about health care open enrollment

File: Covered California Executive Director Peter Lee speaks during a press conference regarding the number of new health care enrollees through CoveredCA.com, the health insurance exchange for the state of California, on Nov. 13, 2013 in Sacramento.
File: Covered California Executive Director Peter Lee speaks during a press conference regarding the number of new health care enrollees through CoveredCA.com, the health insurance exchange for the state of California, on Nov. 13, 2013 in Sacramento.
Max Whittaker/Getty Images

Officials with the state health insurance marketplace Covered California are taking a bus tour starting Monday in Sacramento.

They'll be in 21 cities across the state over nine days to get the word out about open enrollment for health insurance available under the Affordable Care Act. Open enrollment starts Saturday the 15th.

Covered California spokesman Roy Kennedy says there are many ways to enroll in coverage or change your current plan.

"Whether that's through an agent, a certified enrollment counselor, we have storefronts this year — many in Southern California," Kennedy said. "Obviously Los Angeles and San Diego, very big communities where there are a lot of people we might have missed the first time, so we want to touch every community, and part of that is this bus tour."

The open enrollment period is shorter this time. Last year you had six months to sign up  or change your coverage, but this time you only have three months. Open enrollment begins Nov. 15 and goes through Feb. 15.​

You can't sign up for coverage at the events, Kennedy says, but during open enrollment, there will be 28,000 people available to meet with to help you enroll.

"They can meet with these people, figure out what plan is best for them and they can sign up that way," Kennedy said.

For those who are already signed up, there's a renewal process to go through to settle whether you want to stick with your current plan, Kennedy said. There are some new plans this year though, Kennedy said, so you have the option of choosing a new plan at CoveredCA.com.

"They can use our shop and compare tool to go online and see what their estimate is for next year," Kennedy said.