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Language Could Prevent 100,000 Californians from Enrolling in Health Exchange

Aired 3/2/12 on KPBS News.

The study says about a million Californians with limited English skills will be eligible for a tax credit to help buy coverage in 2014. But about ten percent could be shut out specifically because of a language barrier.

The study stated about a million Californians with limited English skills will be eligible for a tax credit to help buy coverage in 2014. But about ten percent could be shut out specifically because of a language barrier.

Daphna Gans is from the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research. She said the more people in the exchange, the more affordable the plans and care for everyone.

"If they don't have access to affordable care, they may use other health options such as going to ERs and using other more costly ways of getting care, which will then increase the cost of care for everyone else," explained Gans.

The report authors call for a more concerted effort to reach out to people with limited English skills, who are at risk of paying more for coverage or remaining uninsured.

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