Senate Health Committee Approves Bill to Expand Medi-Cal Coverage to Low-Income HIV-Positive Residents
The Senate Health and Human Services Committee last Wednesday approved a bill (AB 2197) that would expand Medi-Cal coverage to HIV-positive individuals who have not received an AIDS diagnosis (AIDS Healthcare Foundation release, 2/26). Individuals would have to be HIV-positive and enrolled in the state's AIDS Drug Assistance Program to qualify for the expanded Medi-Cal coverage (AB 2197 text). Assembly member Paul Koretz (D-West Hollywood) introduced the legislation based on a request from CMS for states to expand coverage in their Medicaid programs to include low-income residents "in the early stages of HIV." To receive federal approval, the expansion must be budget-neutral. Koretz said that the bill would help HIV-positive residents "obtain access to stable, reliable health care and continuity of care." The legislation moves to Senate Appropriations Committee for consideration. The Assembly passed the bill earlier this year (AHF release, 6/26).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.