Legislative Republicans Stand Up to Protect Access to Health Care for 880,000 California Children

Posted: June 26, 2012 in California Budget, California Politics
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

From the California State Assembly Republican Caucus:

Senate Republican Leader Bob Huff, of Diamond Bar, and Assembly Republican Leader Connie Conway, of Tulare, today sent the following letter to the Governor opposing legislative Democrats’ plans to shift 880,000 children from the successful, cost-effective Healthy Families program to Medi-Cal:

June 26, 2012

Hon. Jerry Brown

State Capitol, Room 1173

Sacramento, CA 95814

Dear Governor Brown:

It has come to our attention that the Legislative Democrats and your administration have negotiated to end the successful Healthy Families program and force over 880,000 children into Medi-Cal. In addition, the budget presented and your own budget proposal assumed the extension of the Managed Care Plan fee adopted as part of last year’s budget (AB 21X, Chapter 11, 2011).

Last year, members of our caucus supported the Managed Care Plan fee because it allowed the state to maintain funding for the Healthy Families program and was supported by the health plans that would pay the fee. We are writing today to tell you that there is no support in our caucuses for an extension of the fee if the Healthy Families program is eliminated.

We understand that fast growing health and welfare programs must be contained to balance our budget. However, this proposal to eliminate the Healthy Families program is estimated to save less than $13 million which be completely offset by the loss of the fee and the federal funds the fee generates.

Healthy Families has been a model of an effective children’s health insurance program. The program is run efficiently and has a low administrative cost compared to Medi-Cal ($50 per recipient compared to $395 per Medi-Cal recipient). Both providers and the children they serve value this program. There is simply no need to eliminate the program.

We stand ready to help you find the $13 million in budgetary savings but we will not support an extension of the fee in light of the proposal to eliminate Healthy Families which will jeopardize access to health care for almost 1 million California children.

Sincerely,

/s/
Senator Bob Huff

Senate Republican Leader

/s/

Assemblywoman Connie Conway

Assembly Republican Leader

Contact:Sabrina Lockhart (Conway) (916) 319-2034 Hector Barajas (Huff) (916) 651-4029

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