SACRAMENTO, Calif. Nov. 2, 2016- While most Americans get health insurance through their employer or a family member’s workplace, 20 million people now buy coverage through the health insurance marketplaces or exchanges created by the Affordable Care Act, such as Covered California. As yesterday marked the first day of open enrollment for individual health insurance, Commissioner Dave Jones encourages Californians to explore health insurance sold through Covered California to find health care coverage that meets their needs.

“Millions of previously uninsured Californians now have the security of health insurance to protect them thanks to the Affordable Care Act,” said Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones. “With open enrollment even more Californians have the opportunity to secure health insurance coverage.”

If you purchased health insurance through Covered California last year, you will be auto-enrolled in the same or similar plan unless you select a different plan by December 15, 2016. If your health insurer for 2016 is no longer offering coverage through the health insurance marketplace, an alternative health plan will be selected for you unless you opt out of the exchange or select a new plan.

Consumers should shop for health insurance in Covered California notwithstanding rate increases — federal subsidies will reduce premiums for 84 percent of health insurance marketplace enrollees.

California consumers have a number of options to choose from when shopping for health insurance. It is important to shop around and compare offerings. The department urges consumers to contact an insurance agent or Covered California to find their best options and ensure proper health care coverage. Individuals should also check out health insurance sold outside of Covered California. If you are a small employer, you should talk to an insurance broker.