LAO Report: Benefits of Medi-Cal Expansion Would Outweigh Costs
Medi-Cal is California's Medicaid program (AP/Sacramento Bee, 2/19).
The expansion would affect individuals with incomes up to 138% of the federal poverty level -- or $15,415 annually (California Healthline, 1/29).
Mac Taylor -- a legislative analyst -- said that the Medi-Cal expansion is good policy and would improve the health of low-income Californians.
He wrote, "[W]e believe the policy merits of the expansion and the fiscal benefits that are likely to accrue to the state as a whole outweigh the costs and potential fiscal risks" (AP/Sacramento Bee, 2/19).
According to the ACA, the federal government will fund the expansion for the first few years. However, the report found that state spending on the expansion by 2021 would be between $300 million and nearly $1.4 billion annually.
The report states, "Expansion costs are subject to substantial uncertainty."
However, it found that savings that would result from insuring as many as one million more low-income residents would offset the expenses Â (Halper, "PolitiCal," Los Angeles Times, 2/19).
Assembly Health Committee Passes Expansion Bill
The legislation now moves to the Appropriations Committee (Small, "KPCC News," KPCC, 2/19).
On Tuesday, Capital Public Radio's "KXJZ News" reported on the LAO report (Bartolone, "KXJZ News," Capital Public Radio, 2/19).For more information on the LAO report and the passage of AB 1X-1, check out today's Capitol Desk post. This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.