SAN DIEGO: Coalition of Churches Wants Tobacco Monies for Medical Fund
Drawing on a survey that found that more than half of 3,500 area church members were uninsured, the San Diego Organizing Project yesterday presented county supervisors with a plan to expand health insurance coverage. The 20-year-old coalition of church groups proposed using monies from the county's share of the state's tobacco settlement to double the income eligibility level for the county's medical fund to $1,200 per month, a move the county says would cost an additional $10 million annually. For its part, the county has requested $33.8 million for the fund in next year's budget, up from $31 million this year. The request include $500,000 from the tobacco settlement. The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that while County Health Director Dr. Robert Ross had no comment on yesterday's proposal, he "previously has said that there is not enough money to pay for more medical care for the working poor" (Clark, 6/9).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.