Covered California leaders trying to calm fears about the future of the program

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- For some Californians, the results of the presidential election mean uncertainty for the future of their health care.

In a 60 Minutes interview, President-Elect Donald Trump did backtrack a bit from his original statements. But despite promising to keep some components of the Affordable Care Act people are still raising questions.

According to the LA Times, roughly 1.1 million Californians are currently getting some kind of income-based aid through the act. If premium subsidies are nixed the people who need help the most could be forced to cancel their policies.

"There has been a big election. There will be changes, but changes in Washington take time. They do not happen over night. But what can happen overnight is getting a cancer diagnosis," said Peter Lee, Executive Director Covered CA.

Lee is touring the state to calm fears. He's urging people to renew their plans or sign up because, at least for 2017, the policies won't change.

Local cOvered California Agent Adam Paul said he is getting the same questions.

"If it's not etched in stone we really can't say for certain. There's a lot of things up in the air at this point. Until then we keep everyone posted and if something happens we let them know."

Critics of Covered California say plans can be too expensive for some families. With rates even increasing for the Fresno area-- some by 20-percent. But without insurance, you will face a penalty next year under the current laws.

"I wish I could say it's only good news but health care in America is phenomenally expensive and we need to bring down those costs which is what people are seeing. But right now they can shop and lower their prices," said Lee.

Uncertainty in the face of change, President-Elect Trump says, will be for the better.

Covered California is in its fourth year of open enrollment which lasts until January 31st of next year.

After that date, the uninsured face a three-percent penalty on their gross yearly income.
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