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City of La Mesa


Community: La Mesa (County of San Diego)

Population: 56,666


A wellness initiative approved by the city council laid the foundation for the City of La Mesa’s work to increase enrollment of eligible children in no- and low-cost health insurance. The city used existing health fairs and children’s fairs to reach families and collaborated with local health plans to provide outreach and application assistance at community events. La Mesa also worked with the statewide group Teachers for Healthy Kids and local schools to reach families of eligible children.

Program Highlights

  • La Mesa identified two existing community events that provided excellent opportunities to reach out to eligible families about affordable health insurance options for children. Local health plans participated to provide information to families.
  • The city established an ongoing partnership with a local nonprofit organization to follow-up on inquiries at city facilities about affordable children’s health insurance options. The nonprofit helps parents determine whether their children are eligible and complete the application process.
  • La Mesa worked with Teachers for Healthy Kids and area schools to distribute information about children’s health insurance options at a “Back-to-School Night” event.

Information about affordable health insurance options for eligible children was also distributed through the city’s recreation center, pool classes, summer day camps, a community center and the local community college. Marketing efforts included articles in the city’s newsletter, La Mesa FOCUS, which described the available coverage options and eligibility requirements. Because La Mesa lacked the resources to have a staff member become a certified application assistant (an individual with expertise to help families with the application process), the partnership with a local nonprofit organization provided a way for the city to meet its goal of helping families by providing direct technical assistance.


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