It’s important to have medical insurance even if you are healthy.
In Los Angeles County, anyone who was in foster care on their 18th birthday gets Medi-Cal medical insurance until they turn 26.  This means that you can go to any doctor who accepts Medi-Cal and you do not have to be in a managed care plan unless you choose to. Everyone who receives Medi-Cal has an aid code; the aid code for those who were in foster care at age 18 is 4M. It is important to have the 4M aid code so you get the right coverage.

Medi-Cal covers you for:

  • General medical care
  • Specialty medical care
  • Mental health services
  • Eye exams
  • Dental care (exam, fluoride treatment, crown, anterior root canal therapy, dentures and restorative services)

Does it matter where I was in foster care?

If you were in foster care in another state on your 18th birthday and now live in California, you are entitled to Medi-Cal in the California county where you currently live. If you were in foster care on your 18th birthday anywhere in California, you are entitled to Medi-Cal in the California county where you currently live.

Where do I apply if I don’t already have Medi-Cal?

Apply at the county welfare or public assistance office in the county where you currently live. You may also call Dorian Madrid at 626.927.2690. You should not apply through Covered California — it does not work for former foster youth.

What should I know about applying for Medi-Cal if I am coming from another state?

If you are in foster care, or were on your 18th birthday, you need two things to apply for Medi-Cal: a MC-250a form and the MEDIL No. I 14-05. Provide these materials to the eligibility worker if they have any questions. Enrollment should be immediate. The county should contact the state where you were in foster care to verify that you were in foster care. If your status cannot be verified within a reasonable period, you may be transferred to another type of Medi-Cal coverage based on your income.


Additional help

The Alliance for Children’s Rights helps young people who are or were in foster care get benefits. Contact them at 213.368.6010  or