California medical care for uninsured and low income patients.

California families who can’t afford the escalating costs of medical care, or who are uninsured, have dozens of state sponsored and approved programs available to them. Individuals who meet income and other qualifications can receive everything from free prescription medications to specialized care for cancer or other life-threatening conditions. Some of the leading resources are below.

While the demand is very high, and resources are limited, the organizations that oversee these services do their best to meet the demand. Patients with life threatening conditions, and who lack any health insurance coverage at all, will often take priority over others. Some of the programs in California also focus on children, women, seniors, or on meeting special needs. There will be income qualifications that need to be met as well.

Access for Infants and Mothers is affordable health coverage for pregnant women. For those who are within income guidelines, the program covers all medically necessary services and expenses until 60 days after your pregnancy has ended. Beneficiaries can’t be enrolled in Medi-Cal or Medicare. 800-433-2611

AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP) can help people acquire and pay for over 150 FDA approved HIV medications. All resources need to be used to prevent or treat related serious deterioration of health. 888-311-7632

Breast and Cervical Cancer Treatment Program/BCCTP - Can help arrange for the cancer treatment for women diagnosed with cervical or breast cancer. It can provide for no-cost Medi-Cal coverage for the duration of a patient’s cancer treatment. Call 800-824-0088

California Children's Services can coordinate healthcare for eligible children with certain health problems or diseases. While the details will change over time, almost 20 different categories of health issues qualify. The program can pay for hospital stays, doctor visits and care, tests, surgery, physical therapy, x-rays, and medical equipment or supplies. 916-327-1400

Camarillo Care-A-Van operates in the Woodland Hills. The service arranges for the door-to-door transportation for non-emergency medical appointments, Adult Day Services, senior programs, and to Kaiser Hospital. 805-388-2529




Camarillo Nail Care Clinic provides medically necessary toenail and fingernail care for clients who are unable to do it themselves due to poor eyesight, hip/knee replacements, or other conditions. Call 805-388-1952.

Desert Cancer Foundation Treatment Assistance Program can coordinate financial assistance in paying costs for cancer diagnosis and treatment. It is only available for cancer patients who reside in Coachella Valley California and who are uninsured or whose coverage will not pay for their needs. Even insured patients who need to stop working due to their diagnoses may qualify to have their monthly insurance premium paid. 760-773-6554

Durable Medical Equipment Loan Program can facilitate a short term, lower interest loan. Some examples of the medical equipment available include bedside equipment, walkers, crutches, wheelchairs, and canes. 805-388-1952.

Genetically Handicapped Persons Program (GHPP) is a healthcare program for adults in California with certain genetic diseases. Phone number is 800-639-0597

California Healthy Families Program- State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) – Can be provided to more moderate income families. This is low-cost health insurance for children up to age 19 that do not qualify for no-cost Medi-Cal and who also don’t have insurance now. It can pay for a number of needs and bills, including physician services, preventative care, prescription drugs, hospital services, transportation, medical equipment, mental health care, and diagnostic x-ray and lab services. Call 800-880-5305

High-risk Infant Follow-Up Program is for children up to age 3, and it coordinates follow-up for infants discharged from the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. 800-781-4449

IMPACT (Improving Access, Counseling & Treatment for Californians with Prostate Cancer) provides high quality, free prostate cancer treatment for underinsured and/or uninsured men. Other services include chemotherapy, external beam radiation therapy, brachytherapy hormone therapy, and radical prostatectomy. Call 800-409-8252 for information.





Major Risk Medical Insurance Program (MRMIP) – If you have been denied coverage due to preexisting conditions, you may qualify for low-cost health insurance from this program. It is the state of California run pool, and it can help people who are unable to secure coverage due to high risk, lack of income, or other factors. Call 800-289-6574

Medi-Cal (California Medicaid) is the state’s primary health care service for eligible low-income and working poor residents. It offers public health insurance for low-income: children, individuals who are aged, blind or disabled, families with children, pregnant women, and those patients with certain diseases. Medi-Cal can pay for medical bills, including hospitalization, dental, emergency ambulance, lab & x-ray services, and physician visits. 800-877-5379

Medical Therapy Program (MTP) - Occupational therapy, physical therapy, etc. for qualified children with handicapping conditions. 916-327-1400

Operation Access offers free outpatient surgeries at local doctor offices or hospitals. The service is only offered for low-income, uninsured residents, and it can improve their ability to work, health, and overall quality of life. Applicants need to be uninsured and unable to qualify for health insurance including Medicare, Healthy Families, and Medi-Cal. 415-733-0052.

Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan, or PCIP, is a state of California sponsored health insurance program for those denied coverage due to pre-existing medical conditions. It offers a broad range of health benefits, including prescription drugs, primary, hospital and specialty care. All covered benefits are available even if it is just to treat a pre-existing condition. There are deductibles, premiums and out of pocket limits needed in order to qualify. Call 877-428-5060.

Presumptive Eligibility for Pregnant Women offers immediate, temporary coverage for prenatal care to low-income pregnant families. Low income and uninsured individuals can receive specific walk-in prenatal care and prescription drugs for conditions related to pregnancy. Phone number is 800-824-0088.

Suzanne Jackson Breast Cancer Fund - Coordinates screening for breast cancer for residents of Coachella Valley. Financial aid is offered for people who cannot afford testing, are uninsured, and who meet income requirements. 760-773-6554




Vaccines for Children Program (VFC) – Offers either low cost or free vaccines and immunizations for children. Vaccines are distributed to the State of California as well as local/county health agencies at no charge. These organizations or government offices will then need to distribute items to physicians/health clinics that have enrolled. It has been effective in addressing Meningocaccal, Dipththeria, hepatitis, influenza, tetanus, measles, mumps pertussis, and polio. Main phone umber is 877-243-8832

WISEWOMAN - California -Heart of the Family- Heart/Stroke Screening will offer resources in an effort to delay, prevent, or control cardiovascular and other chronic diseases in uninsured, low-income or underinsured women. Telephone number is 916-449-5319.


By Jon McNamara

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