San Mateo County Health Plan for Low-Income Residents May End Next Year
The San Mateo County Commission on Public Assisted Medical Care yesterday voted to send notices to physicians as early as this week that the county's health plan for low-income residents "could be on the verge of extinction," the San Jose Mercury News reports. The Health Plan of San Mateo, a countywide Medi-Cal managed care plan contracted by the state, provides health coverage to about 42,000 low-income county residents. The health plan, established in 1987, costs less than Medi-Cal and provides physicians with higher reimbursements than the state program, health plan Executive Director Mike Murray said. However, negotiations with the state over funds for the health plan have "dragged on without a clear sense that there would be a big enough increase" to continue the program, the Mercury News reports. The county has asked for $13 million in additional funds for the program from state and federal sources. The contract between the health plan and the state expires Jan. 31, 2003. Murray met with state negotiators yesterday to discuss a new contract, but they "offered no dollar figure," the Mercury News reports. Failure to reach an agreement would force health plan members to enroll in traditional Medi-Cal (Neidorf, San Jose Mercury News, 11/14).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.