CAHU was in attendance on both days of the first Select Assembly Committee for Health Care meetings. The focus in these meetings, if you were unable to watch them, was data collection on our current system in all market segments from IFP, Medicare and Medi-Cal to Employer coverage. They had panelists from Insure The Unisured Project (ITUP), Health Policy Center, UC Berkeley Center for Labor Research & Education, and The Commonwealth Fund. The second day focused on systems currently in place outside of the United States.
CAHU leadership was present at both hearings and made the following statement:
CAHU is California's largest licensed health agent organization. Approximately 15,000 licensed and certified agents have enrolled over 45% of all Covered California enrollees each year since the first open enrollment of the Affordable Care Act as well as a significant portion of California's Medi-Cal population.
We want universal healthcare, we want all Californians to be able to be covered through a public-private partnership. From experience, we can tell you that consumers want choices, consumers want high quality care at an affordable price and when things don't go as planned consumers want help from someone to be there at the gate and help them to a resolution.
As was mentioned in earlier remarks, the ACA has worked to get more people covered and provide better coverage to all people. California has been the prime example of how the landmark legislation can work. As the boots on the ground force that has played a key part in its success in the Golden State, we asked to be part of the discussion to finding the solution that provides quality, affordable healthcare for all.
We have a number of ideas to share with the committee on how to provide wider coverage than is possible today. We would like to ask permission to present these ideas in one of the subsequent hearings.
Attorney General Gives Permission to Start Gathering Signatures
The California Attorney General Xavier Becerra (D) has issued the formal
Title and Summary to proposed Initiative 17-0019
. The sponsors of the initiative had originally titled it the California Healthcare Roadblock Removal Act. However, the title is officially now called 'Establishes a Fund for Healthcare in California Exempt from Revenue Restrictions.'
This initiative seeks to amend the state Constitution in order to pass new taxes to fill the Healthy California Trust Fund (as established by the initiative). If this passes, for example, it would only take a simple majority vote to impose the $400 billion in new or redirected state taxpayer funds to pay for universal single payer healthcare - without any limit or oversight.
Next, the proponents must collect
585,407 valid signatures and turn them in by May 11, 2018 for the California Secretary of State to verify and approve a random sample of signatures. If they don't have enough qualified signatures in the sample the Secretary of State has until June 28 to do full verification of all signatures. Click here for more details on the CA ballot initiative process.
For Agents, this means the biggest barrier (money) to a universal single payer system will be on the November 2018 ballot.
Local chapters leaders should look for new materials and information from CAHU about the initiative to share with agents and their clients.
Additionally, local PACs should prepare to move into high gear on raising the necessary dollars to educate consumers, clients, employers and organizations about the havoc and fiscal damage if this initiative poses for all Californians.
CAHU continues to bring our members information as we have it. If you have any questions or concerns please email firstname.lastname@example.org.