Six Sacramento-Area Counties Consider Regional Health Plan for Young Children
Officials in the six counties in the Sacramento area may partner to establish the first regional health plan in the state for young children who do not qualify for Medi-Cal or Healthy Families, the Sacramento Bee reports. The proposed health plan would cover children ages five and younger in families that have annual incomes at or less than 300% of the federal poverty level and do not meet annual income requirements for Medi-Cal or Healthy Families, as well as children of undocumented immigrants who do not qualify for the programs. The First Five Children and Families commissions of the six counties -- Colusa, El Dorado, Sacramento, Sutter, Yolo and Yuba -- would administer the health plan, which the counties would fund with tobacco tax revenue. The First Five commissions must reach agreement on the details of and vote to approve the health plan before the plan can take effect, the Bee reports. Under one proposal, the First Five Commissions would combine their funds to purchase a health plan through a commercial insurer and cover most of the cost of coverage for participants with tobacco tax revenue; the proposal would allow participants to receive health care in a different county, provided that the physician is on the provider list of the health plan. The First Five commissions first began to consider the health plan this summer after the Sierra Sacramento Valley Medical Society released a report that found that 19,000 of the 157,000 Sacramento-area children ages five and younger lack health insurance (Martineau, Sacramento Bee, 9/12).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.