Providers Deserve Better: Hear Our Stories

More than 50% of California family child care providers have reported delayed or postponed medical treatment due to lack of health insurance or being underinsured. 20% reported being uninsured and unable to afford the most basic plan through Covered California.

Nationwide, 95% of union workers have retirement plans. Here in California, 50% of all workers have retirement plans. But just 10% of child care workers in California have retirement plans and living paycheck to paycheck leaves providers still working into their 70s and longer with no way to retire with dignity.

Governor Newsom promised Californians that he would sufficiently fund health care and retirement benefits in the next budget for child care providers. Now, his revised budget shows he’s not making good on that promise.

Call him, TODAY, and tell him to fully fund investments in child care providers’ health care and retirement benefits in his budget.


How does the lack of healthcare and retirement hurt us? Read our stories below to learn more.


Alameda County


I needed a mammogram but I wasn’t able to afford the out-of-pocket cost. I had to cancel my appointment. I’m still worried and afraid.


I unfortunately passed out last month after getting off work. I had to be transported via ambulance and had to pay out of pocket for that service & $1980 for a hospital stay which was 6 hours only.


I go to the clinic. But when they request me to do a breast exam or colonoscopy, I always have postponed because of cost.

Imperial County


What I’ve put off because of cost: Covid tests, mammograms, dentist, and vision.

When we are sick, we have to go to Mexico to see an affordable doctor where I have to wait in a line of 4 hours to cross back.


I was scared to get sick with COVID because I do not have insurance. My daughter worked with COVID patients and it was a constant nightmare. Whenever I become sick, I have to cross to Mexico to get medical attention.

We are constantly exposed to virus and sicknesses because we work with children and parents. We cannot control their choices but their choices affect us as their care provider. We need affordable healthcare to ensure our health and that of our families.


More than once, my health has been affected and I must to either take over the counter medications or ask my family or friends for medications they already have. Sometimes, I even need to cross the border to Mexico to get affordable doctors and medications. It is a real shame living in the #1 best place to live and not having health insurance.

Kern County


I pay $1870/month for health insurance. I have pre-existing conditions and I can’t afford to go without. But I can hardly afford this price either.

As a provider I went without health insurance for more than 10 years, before I was married. I couldn’t go to the hospital or the doctor. During that time, I was getting sick every month and I could never heal. I didn’t know what was going on, it was getting worse, but I kept working and couldn’t afford to seek medical care. One day I paused in my child care and realized that I couldn’t breathe and I couldn’t keep going. I went to urgent care where My blood pressure was 254/224 which the staff had never seen before. I told him, you have to get me better so I can go home and get back to my child care business; I can’t stay. My families needed me but I almost ran myself into the ground.

I now know just how lucky I was. But we shouldn’t have to rely on luck.

Another time I hurt myself bowling with the kids. My knee slipped out from under me and I was in so much pain. I didn’t have health care so I went to urgent care. I couldn’t afford the health care treatment and all I could afford was the brace, I couldn’t afford the pills or anything else. My knee has never been the same because I couldn’t afford proper care–and that was 20 years ago.


A provider who I was mentoring who recently became a licensed provider was unable to afford health insurance as she upgraded her business. It breaks my heart that I am sure this contributed to her not seeking regular health care, and she had a heart attack while working and died a couple months back. To me, her death was preventable.

LA County


I have a job that doesn’t offer healthcare. I haven’t seen a doctor in 18 years ago.

I have thyroid problem and I need surgery. I cannot afford that. I was in the emergency due to COVID and my thyroid got really bad. They told me that I need surgery as soon as possible.


I’ve postponed health care because a visit was going to cost $600 without the additional cost of blood work.


I fell down while interacting with the kids and broke my arm, and the cost for putting a cast on my arm and the x-rays were very costly. I couldn’t afford the cost or the therapy so my arm is not healing as it should.


I am 62 and without health insurance because it is just too expensive without being under a group plan. I have to pay for everything and it is so expensive. When you think you are finished with the doctor’s bill, here comes another one!!


I had to cancelled my mammogram due to the cost!


Yes, they found cysts in my left breast but the treatment, ultrasound, mammogram and biopsy were too expensive


My copayment was too high, and I had a knee surgery. Afterwards, they had me in therapy daily costing $50/day. I couldn’t afford it so I had to stop going


I have a condition that means I am at high risk and is helped with medication. But I can’t afford this medication that costs $2500 per day.


I needed to have tests run for my heart and then follow up tests as well. It’s too expensive so I just didn’t bother getting the first test done.


It’s just not affordable. I’m 60 years old and cannot afford Healthcare. I checked into it even with Kaiser have to pay or they want me to pay $689 a month


Doctor visits & X-rays, blood work, MRI’s are too expensive to afford. I prefer not to see a doctor!!!


Our income fluctuates based on enrollment and it affects our ability to have consistent health care that is affordable. As a child care provider, we are at risk of catching illness from the children and their families so it is important that we have affordable health care for us and our families. It wasn’t until the affordable care act was passed that I was able to get health insurance.


I have postponed high-cost dental procedures and also a procedure which would require six to eight weeks of bed rest.


I don’t have Healthcare insurance at all. It’s too much out of pocket for a monthly premium.


I have health insurance through the state. It takes forever to get things done. I’ve been trying to get a hernia removed for about 12 years. I’ve been going to appointment after appointment with no follow through from the healthcare system.


At this time, I have not been able to get Insurance because of the High prices. It has become very complicated for me since I am pregnant and that stresses me not being able to have medical insurance


I had UTI twice, have COVID twice, and had a stomach bug recently. I just had to buy over the Counter medicine because Dr visits and X-rays are very highly cost. Also, I haven’t gotten my mammogram due to high cost.


I am only able to go to the doctor if it is an emergency due to the fact that I don’t have any health insurance. My doctor wants to send me for tests for my heart because he feels I may have an issue.


Right now, I have to go to the eye doctor because I have floaters in my eye. I have no insurance, so I have to pay cash, and they don’t even want to see you unless you have insurance.


I am 68 so I do have health care through Medicare. But I went many years without it


The monthly premium payments to Covered California are too high.


I was charged $10k for an X-Ray. That’s not including medication if I needed any.

Madera County


I asked to make an appointment for varicose vein, only the consultation cost $250. It was too much money for me and I decided cancel the appointment.


I pay $786/month for health insurance


I couldn’t go to an appointment that they were going to schedule me for a hernia operation because they called me and told me to bring my insurance card. Since I don’t have insurance, I told him I’ll call back for another appointment and cancelled.

Monterey County


I had anxiety, and I couldn’t afford a specialist.


I haven’t been able to get a visit to the doctor. I only go for an emergency or for vaccines

Orange County


I fell and fractured my knee. I’ve been unable to work for 3 months. The consultations of the specialists and the exams are very expensive, in addition to the fact that I cannot collect unemployment.

Riverside County


I have moles that I need to be looked at by medical professionals to see if cancer but I have to pay 80% of the bill. I don’t have that kind of money.


I’m gonna lose my MediCal and I have a serious medical condition


I haven’t seen a Dr in 4 years. I’m pre diabetic & need to see one very soon


I had to start fundraiser to support my medical treatments, and I could only afford some of the physical therapy because the daycare does not provide enough income.

Sacramento County


I lost health insurance because I could not afford the monthly amount.


At one point, we qualified for Medi-cal. Other than that, we did not have health insurance for many years. Before Medi-cal we paid for it out of pocket (kaiser). We paid $759 a month for my husband and myself. After a year kaiser raised our rates to over $900 a month. We couldn’t afford it and when I took my husband off, it did nothing to really lower the rates, and then they said I didn’t qualify due to a preexisting condition. But if I wanted to pay an extra $200 for myself, I would be accepted. So, we dropped insurance and ended up on Medi-cal after I was diagnosed with kidney cancer in 2008. After that, we had high monthly deductibles with medi-cal, if we used it at all during any given month, we had to pay the first $1,700 of the bills. Finally, we came of age for our Social Security, and got Med-care through that, and have a gap insurance to go with it. SS takes out $173 out of our SS checks to cover that gap insurance. We still have office visit cost, and some share of cost. It’s been hard since I have a serious health issue. Since the 2008 kidney cancer I stayed cancer free until March 2020. The pandemic hit and my cancer returned. And through it all I can’t afford to retire and have to work through cancer treatments, working, and doctors appt.

San Benito County


I try to wait until I can leave the country to be able to get medical help for me so that it would be cheaper and they would see me faster.

San Bernardino County


For 7 years I had fibroids in my uterus and suffered from abundant bleeding and therefore I was kept with anemia and due to lack of insurance I did not do the surgery


I just go without care because of cost.


I can’t afford the health insurance since our income can fluctuate daily!

San Diego County


I am a diabetic and I have high blood pressure, but I have not been able to receive medication or see a doctor in approximately 3 years.

Santa Clara County


My tooth has been hurting and I needed extraction and implants. I paid $400+ for the extraction alone. It will cost me $4000 for the implant per tooth and I need 3 teeth. How can I afford this? I am putting the whole thing on hold.

Santa Cruz County


I went a year without being able to go to the eye doctor. I have glaucoma and little by little, I am losing my sight and I need a treatment with very expensive drops

San Francisco County


I can’t afford to get sick, it’s just not an option.


Well, I have insurance through my kids’ father. I have a preexisting condition that prevents me from properly divorcing my husband because my health insurance will be too expensive. Thankfully the father of my kids is kind and still ok with that, but I should not have to be in this situation that I am working in this profession and unable to afford my own health insurance.

Stanislaus County


I have had to postpone gallbladder surgery due to my copay cost and non-paid time off. I have had my portion of premiums go as high as $450 per month plus a high deductible for everything except preventative care. I have had toothaches for long periods of time due to high copay costs for dental work.

Ventura County


I have not gone to a doctor in a long time because I cannot afford it. I have been doing daycare since 1997 and it’s been hard. For me I need to see a doctor about my knee and my hip. My face has turned and I need to see a doctor for that. I wish we really had medical


Being self-employed and at the moment I have insurance with MediCal which is a blessing. However dental and vision is not covered, so I have to have my dental check up but I can’t afford out of pocket costs. I also need a new pair of glasses which as soon as I have some extra money doing some work in the weekends, I hope to have enough to pay for them.


I don’t go to the doctor unless I truly feel ill to the point where I just go to urgent care or straight to the hospital.

Yolo County


I still have to suffer in pain when I have a toothache because MediCal does not have a local dentist that can help me.


Contra Costa County


Get a part-time job

LA County


I will have to invest in a retirement plan but I really can’t afford to set money aside for it.


Based on my savings I wouldn’t be able to retire for at least 20 more years if that


I won’t be able to retire


I am unable to save. I don’t make enough money. I live paycheck to paycheck and am a single parent, so my retirement is looking very scary to me & my 2 young daughters.


I used the majority of my savings just to keep my doors open during the pandemic.


Maybe I can retire at the age of 70 or later.


No Savings for retirement at the moment


Go to my country to survive in retirement because life is cheaper. But I don’t think it is not fair because in this country I have put in my sweat and my effort to grow and help new generations such as the children I have cared for and grow this country with my life. I hope that the state can help me with an amount of money to end my life with decency since I am 64 years old and what Social Security is going to give me is not enough.


I won’t be able to retire because of low pay from the state


Should have retired years ago. I am 68 and I am stuck. I have no savings so I can’t retire


I am worried because I’m 60 yrs old without a retirement plan or savings.

Madera County


I don’t know how I will retire. I have no savings


My retirement plan is to continue working as long as I can, since my savings will not be enough to continue paying my expenses.


I can’t save enough for retirement to live a good life without having to live with my children, and afford all the medicines that I may need, it is not enough.

Merced County


I don’t have any retirement savings yet.

Sacramento County


I will hopefully retire within the next two years. I do not have savings, just Social Security, and we will have to sell our house, find something cheap that we can out right pay for, and live off the rest. Hopefully…….I’m 71 years old still working in the field, and been in the field nearly 52 years. We recently had to re-fi our house and use equity to pay off bills and etc and lower our monthly payments so we can afford to stay here while we still work. However, if we retire right now, we only have SS coming in and it will not cover anything other than the mortgage and some utilities. With health conditions for myself and some for my husband, we need to retire (just based on our age) but we flat out can’t afford to do so.

San Bernardino County


Maybe I will be able to retire at 80-85 years old


Not sure what I’m going to do probably continue to work as long as I’m healthy. I’m a transplant patient, so I spend a lot of my funds on medical and medicine. I’m out of pocket for my medical insurances. I ran my daycare for 3 years doing dialysis three times a day from home because I needed to work.


Since Covid I’ve used my savings. When I retire I just don’t want to suffer. At this rate I won’t be able to retire.


I will have to continue to work rather than retire because I don’t make enough money to start a retirement savings account. I live from paycheck to paycheck, and it’s been this way for over 20 yrs.

San Diego County


At this time, I don’t see how I can retire.

San Francisco County


I won’t be able to retire without family support. I was in food stamps for the first years running my FCC and have start my contribution late in life. I will have to rent a room to support myself.

San Mateo County


I have a retirement account but I think it’s not enough

Stanislaus County


Only option is work until I die or sell my house and live in a trailer

Ventura County


My retirement plans are to continue working