New #CABudget Provides Urgent Short-Term COVID-19 Help, But Long-Term Investments Still Needed for State’s Recovery

Last week, Governor Gavin Newsom unveiled the January proposal for the 2021-22 State Budget. The budget provides needed short-term investments to help Californians in crisis, but more ongoing and long-term support will be necessary to move California down the road towards health and economic recovery.  We still urge the CA state legislature to look at what more can be done for Californians to get care and coverage that is desperately needed in this pandemic and its aftermath. The success of our health and economic recovery depends not just on these upfront investments, but our ongoing commitments to care, coverage and public health. This proposed budget includes a range of specific investments in response to the COVID-19 crisis, including $372 million […] Read More

Twenty Takeaways from 2020

Protecting Our Progress and Confronting the Challenges of COVID-19 Like most Californians, we had high hopes for progress in 2020. The year began in earnest with the implementation of expanded access and affordability to coverage for hundreds of thousands of Californians, and ambitious plans to increase health industry oversight to control costs, improve quality and equity, and win key patient protections. When the pandemic hit in March, Health Access doubled-down on our commitment to protect California consumers, adapting quickly to the many changes in our health system and in response to COVID-19. This meant pausing some of our larger-scale efforts in the short-term in order to fight for consumer protections and access to care during a pandemic-induced economic downturn and […] Read More

#CABudget Votes This Week Include Major Health Investments and Expansions

This week, the Assembly and Senate are poised to pass key health expansions as part of the overall 2019-20 Budget. The votes taken today and this week will advance health care reforms that were negotiated by the Governor and legislative leaders. Governor Newsom has until July 1 to sign the budget, which will make official the provision of new financial help to around one million Californians, starting in 2020, a major expansion of coverage for hundreds of thousands of Californians. Here are comments describing the practical impacts of these investments for California consumers: This year’s state budget provides new help to hundreds of thousands of Californians to better access and afford health coverage in our high cost of living state. […] Read More

#Health4All Bills Introduced in California State Legislature on First Day of Session

Elevating the urgency of health care access for all communities, Senators Ricardo Lara and Maria Elena Durazo, and Assemblymembers Dr. Joaquin Arambula, Rob Bonta, and David Chiu introduced two #Health4All bills on the first official day of the new 2019 legislative session. The two bills, SB 29 and AB 4, are a top priority for immigrant rights and health care advocates and would provide full-scope Medi-Cal to low-income undocumented adults by removing immigration status as an eligibility exclusion. While the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has significantly reduced California’s uninsured rate to less than 7%, 1.4 million Californians are locked out of health coverage because of their immigration status. Undocumented Californians are the largest, single group of uninsured individuals in the […] Read More

Health Access Statement of Solidarity

For 30 years, Health Access California has fought for the right of ALL Californians to have access to quality, affordable healthcare. Our work is grounded in our inclusive vision that we all benefit when everyone has access to needed care and coverage, regardless of how much money they have, where they are born, the color of their skin, their physical or mental abilities, their sexuality and gender identity, or the faith they practice. Our health is inextricably linked to the ability to live without fear of being deported or separated from your loved ones. If any Californians are scared to sign up for coverage or seek care, that leads to broader public health consequences. Allowing discrimination in any aspect of our […] Read More

Budget Deal Reached!

The Legislature and the Governor have reached a budget deal! The Budget Conference Committee convened on Thursday night to take final action on budget issues in Conference Committee, which is described below. See how health priorities fared in our budget scorecard. The revised budget includes several limited but important investments in health and human services, including in child care, housing, and other areas. In particular, the budget including the long-sought repeal of the Maximum Family Grant Rule in CalWORKS. The budget deal repeals the Maximum Family Grant rule in CalWORKS, a racist and punitive policy that puts families deeper into poverty. Health Access congratulates our allies in the health and human services community for this long overdue victory! On health care […] Read More

Budget Update: Health Priorities for California Consumers

This post was written by Tam Ma, Policy Counsel.  The Assembly and Senate budget committees completed their review of the Governor’s May Revision and finalized their respective versions of the 2016-17 budget. The budget conference committee will begin meeting next week to reconcile the differences between actions taken by the two houses. The Legislature must pass the budget bill by June 15. This post highlights some important actions the budget subcommittees took as well as issues that will be addressed in conference committee. You can also view our 2016 Budget Scorecard. ITEMS AGREED TO BY BOTH LEGISLATIVE HOUSES: The following items have been included in both the Senate and Assembly budgets, meaning it is likely these proposals will be in […] Read More