CalMatters asked L.A. Care CEO John Baackes about efforts to extend Medi-Cal in "A scaled-back bid to care for undocumented Californians". The article reports that recent bills to extend Medi-Cal coverage to undocumented adults in California took a major hit this week when the measures were placed on suspense. Legislators made the move to have a "vastly scaled-back version included in the ongoing budget negotiations, which will conclude in mid-June."
In talking to John Baackes, he spoke about the importance of these efforts, particularly addressing the concern that the extended health coverage will be costly to the State and tax-payers.
Baackes said the undocumented adult population is the largest segment of people in the state without health insurance, and getting them coverage is a huge cost-saver in the long run.
“Their care right now is episodic and inefficient—and expensive,” he said. California is already paying to care for them in emergency rooms and other urgent-care facilities, so the choice is whether or not to do that in a low-cost way, he said.
About L.A. Care Health Plan
L.A. Care Health Plan is a public entity and community-accountable health plan serving residents of Los Angeles County through a variety of health coverage programs including L.A. Care Covered™, Medi-Cal, L.A. Care Cal MediConnect Plan and PASC-SEIU Homecare Workers Health Care Plan. L.A. Care is a leader in developing new programs through innovative partnerships designed to provide health coverage to vulnerable populations and to support the safety net. With more than 2 million members, L.A. Care is the nation’s largest publicly operated health plan.