State To Modify Medi-Cal Rules To Pave Way for Stimulus Funding
On Friday, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) is expected to sign several bills, including one that would change Medi-Cal eligibility requirements, to pave the way for the state to receive federal stimulus funding, the Sacramento Bee reports (Sanders, Sacramento Bee, 3/27). Medi-Cal is California's Medicaid program.
In all, the state could receive $30 billion to $50 billion in federal stimulus funding, as well as $35 billion in tax relief (Buchanan, San Francisco Chronicle, 3/26). The state expects to receive more than $10 billion in federal funding for health care (Stockton Record, 3/26).
In a statement, Schwarzenegger said the bills "would help boost our economy, provide critical services for Californians, create jobs and put people back to work" (Sacramento Bee, 3/27).
Modifications to the state's Medi-Cal eligibility rules are necessary for California to receive increased federal funding for Medi-Cal through the stimulus package (San Francisco Chronicle, 3/26).
The stimulus package bars states from receiving additional federal funds for their Medicaid programs if the programs' eligibility rules are more restrictive than they were on July 1, 2008.
As part of the fiscal year 2008-2009 state budget, California lawmakers increased eligibility verification requirements from once per year to twice annually for children covered by Medi-Cal.
Earlier this month, Sen. Elaine Alquist (D-San Jose) introduced legislation (SB 26 3XÂ and SB 337) that would require children's Medi-Cal eligibility to be verified once per year instead of twice annually (California Healthline, 3/9).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.