It was a big, big day in health care:
* The vote for the Senate #BCRA #Trumpcare bill was delayed!
* Governor Brown signed the #CABudget which finally fully restores #DentiCal.
* Key bills on prescription drug prices #SB17 & #SB790 pass Assembly Health Committee.
* Monterey County expands its #Health4All pilot program for undocumented immigrants.
Of course, the biggest headline was that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has put off the motion to proceed until after the July 4th break. This is great news: if he had the votes, he would have called for the vote, and moved to pass the bill by the end of the week.
A so-called health bill opposed by doctor, patient, hospital, senior, and consumer groups that would make millions more uninsured, and have many others pay much more for far less coverage, shouldn’t just be delayed, but dead. While we are relieved that the Senate doesn’t have the votes today, all Californians should continue to be concerned about this Congressional catastrophe that would cut and cap Medicaid and ACA coverage for millions.
Even with this reprieve, we are still precariously close to health care Armageddon. The bill’s severe cuts to Medicaid and affordability assistance for private coverage would mean not just 22 million more uninsured Americans, but also deep cuts to the hospitals, providers, and health system on which we all rely. In our state, the Senate bill’s passage means at least 4-5 million uninsured Californians becoming uninsured, living sicker, dying younger, and being one emergency away from financial ruin.
This threat to California’s health care remains. President Trump and Senate leadership trying to come to an agreement with recalcitrant Senators by Friday, draft amendments and get a new CBO score over the recess, and have a vote mid-July.
Every Californian should use the July 4th recess to express their opposition to this bill, and get our state’s fourteen Congressmembers who voted for the House bill to denounce the current legislation, now that they have seen the analysis of the devastation it would cause. We expect this debate to go into JULY. The real deadline, we always suspected, is the end of July, before the Congress recesses for the entirety of August, and September is when they need to pass a federal budget and prevent a government shutdown.