Dusting myself off…

It’s Groundhog Day, as I re-emerge…

As readers of the blog may have noticed, I’ve stayed away from posting for a few days, except for an initial reaction, a first crack reflecting on future health reform chances in other states and here in California, and links to what others are saying.

My lack of posts is more than abiding by the saying “if you can’t say anything nice….”, or even spending some time with my little boy (who is lucky to be insured, unlike over 800,000 California children who could have been helped… whoops, there’s the bitterness again). It’s actually surprising that you can be as busy in defeat as in victory, from trying to understand the outcome, recalibrate plans and begin to regroup, and catch up on all the work that was neglected during the final push for reform.

We’ll have more to post about next steps in health reform–beyond the immediate debates like who’s to blame, whether the Senate hearing was “fair” or “hostile,” or what could have been done differently, by proponents or opponents of AB x1 1.

There’s a lot of work that needs to be done, and Californians–insured and uninsured–need help, desperately and immediately. There will be the annual “Insure the Uninsured Project” conference on Wednesday, and I’m on a panel that was going to be talking about the ballot campaign, and that now is charged with the question “What’s next?” We’re in the process of developing the answer.

The most immediate issue now is the pending budget cuts. Monday afternoon will bring a full Senate Budget Committee hearing on the health cuts, and the next two weeks will be a mad dash to pass a mid-year cuts package. And that’s only the opening act, to the main fight in the next several months over the much bigger cuts proposed for the 2008-09 budget.

So the groundhog says at least six months of budget battles.

Health Access California promotes quality, affordable health care for all Californians.

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