Single-Payer Marches Forward In California, But Sky-High Price Tag Threatens To Trip It Up

California Health Line

June 2, 2017

The proposal passed the state Senate and now heads to the Assembly, but with few details on how to foot the $400-billion-a-year cost for the plan, the prospects don't look too sunny.

Los Angeles Times: Single-Payer Healthcare Plan Advances In California Senate — Without A Way To Pay Its $400-Billion Tab
A proposal to adopt a single-payer healthcare system for California took an initial step forward Thursday when the state Senate approved a bare-bones bill that lacks a method for paying the $400-billion cost of the plan. The proposal was made by legislators led by Sen. Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) at the same time President Trump and Republican members of Congress are working to repeal and replace the federal Affordable Care Act. (McGreevy, 6/1)

The Associated Press: California Senate Backs Longshot Single-Payer Care Bill
The move came even as proponents acknowledged they don't know how to pay its huge $400 billion price tag. The measure would have died if it failed to clear the Senate this week. Democrats said they wanted to keep it alive as the Assembly tries to work out a massive overhaul of the state health care system. "With President Trump's promise to abandon the Affordable Care Act as we know it, it leaves millions without access to care and California is once again tasked to lead," said Sen. Ricardo Lara, a Democrat from Bell Gardens who wrote the single-payer bill with Sen. Toni Atkins, a San Diego Democrat. (Cooper, 6/1)

The Mercury News: California Senate Passes Single-Payer Health Care Plan
The California Nurses Association, the bill’s lead sponsor, has pushed the proposal hard, organizing demonstrations at the California Democratic Convention last month and promising to “primary” incumbent Democrats who don’t jump on board. On Wednesday, a study commissioned by the nurses concluded that Californians could save tens of billions of dollars annually under such a system through lowering of drug prices and elimination of administrative overhead. (Murphy, 6/2)

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