California Governor Jerry Brown’s new budget estimates that almost a third of the population of California will be enrolled in Medi-Cal during next fiscal year. Pauline Bartolone has more from Sacramento.
About 11.5 million Californians will get health care through Medi-Cal. That’s higher than what the Governor or state health planners anticipated. So the revised budget adds more than a billion dollars to account for the surge.
Anthony Wright of Health Access says he’s pleased the state expanded Medi-Cal under the Affordable Care Act.
Wright: “We think that this shows the need to invest in the program.”
But he’s concerned the new budget proposal doesn’t cancel a 10% cut in Medi-Cal provider rates.
Wright: “Those folks need access to doctors and specialists. With a low rate, that means that there’s a number of doctors who simply don’t take those patients.”
The California Medical Association says retaining Medi-Cal provider cuts in next year’s budget could have terrible consequences for the state’s lowest-income patients.