Budget Cuts in California Take Away From Expected Benefits of Federal Stimulus Money

Experts expect community clinics in California to get about $250,000 each from the federal economic stimulus package that President Obama signed in February, but cuts to Medi-Cal included in the California budget could mitigate some of the stimulus package’s benefits.

Medi-Cal is California’s Medicaid program.

A California Healthline Special Report by David Gorn includes comments from:

  • Marty Lynch, executive director of the Lifelong Medical Care clinic in Berkeley;
  • Chris Patterson, associate director of communications for government affairs for the California Primary Care Association,
  • Sara Rosenbaum, chair of the Department of Health Policy at George Washington University; and
  • Anthony Wright, executive director of Health Access California.

The planned elimination of dental benefits for adult Medi-Cal beneficiaries poses some of the biggest challenges to clinics, followed by cuts to public hospitals.

Patterson said that “while the stimulus is helping the clinics retain about 900 jobs, just the Denti-Cal cut alone jeopardizes a little over 1,000 jobs” (Gorn, California Healthline, 4/17).

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