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Action Alert | CPEHN Budget/Bill Update: Health Equity Proposals Included in Budget Deal!

On Saturday June 8th, the 2019 Budget Conference Committee made up of representatives from both the Senate and Assembly approved the FY 2019-20 budget plan. 

The agreement includes funds for CPEHN’s priority budget asks aimed at improving health equity for California’s diverse communities. Specifically, the agreement provides state funds for community-based Medi-Cal enrollment, asthma preventive services and efforts to reduce disparities and improve mental health outcomes for those accessing county mental health services. 

The budget also expands access to health care for ALL young adults ages 19-25, regardless of immigration status, using state dollars. While CPEHN applauds this important step, more needs to be done to ensure ALL Californians, including the state’s elder population can access critical health care coverage. In other exciting news, the budget agreement improves health care affordability for low and middle income Californians through additional state funds for premium assistance. 

CPEHN’s State Budget Policy Priorities Included in the Final Budget Agreement:  

  • Outreach and Enrollment in Medi-Cal: $30 million over two years with a federal match to fund community-based outreach to enroll Medi-Cal eligible beneficiaries in health care coverage. 
  • Asthma Preventive Services in Medi-Cal: $15 million one-time funding for one year to allow Medi-Cal reimbursement for asthma education and home trigger assessments provided by qualified, non-licensed professionals including community health workers, and increase financial support for environmental trigger remediation in the home. 
  • Improvements in County Mental Health Equity: $3 million for ongoing technical assistance to counties on reducing health disparities. $5 million in one-time funding for innovation grants to invest in non-traditional mental health providers to serve the diverse needs of our communities. Missing was the $2 million requested for statewide and county level data on mental health. 

Additional Priorities Included in the Final Budget Agreement:  

  • Health for All Young Adults: $98 million for the expansion of Medi-Cal to approximately 90,000 young adults ages 19-25, regardless of immigration status. Funds for elders were not included. 
  • Affordability Assistance for Covered California Enrollees: $1 billion plus an additional $450 million over three years for affordability assistance for individuals below 138 percent of the FPL ($16,800 for an individual) as well as subsidies for individuals earning up to 600 percent of the FPL.  

Tweet your Approval for these Important Health Equity Priorities TODAY!

While we are happy to see this additional funding included in the final agreement, the full Assembly and Senate still has to vote and the Governor has to agree with these funding priorities. Below are some sample tweets you can send to show your approval while urging the Governor to follow through with his commitment to health equity!  

  • We thank the Legislature for approving $15 million for in-home asthma relief services in the #CABudget Conference Committee! We look to @GavinNewsom for his leadership to help CA #BreatheEasier as we near the approval of the final budget. @Senator_Hurtado @RAMPasthma @ChildrenNow 
  • The #CABudget Conference Cmte approved $30 million for community-based health navigator funding for 2 years! Thank you for the support! We ask for the approval of this item in the final budget by @GavinNewsom to ensure that ppl can access healthcare services. @CHC   
  • TY #CABudget Conf Cmte for approving $8 million to reduce mental health disparities! Cultural competency is essential in providing effective mental health services. We encourage @GavinNewsom to approve this item in the final budget. #Care4MyCulture 

Check out CPEHN’s Budget Scorecard for additional information on the status of CPEHN’s budget requests and other health equity budget priorities. CPEHN will continue to monitor and weigh in on the Governor’s actions leading up to the July 1st deadline to sign or veto the proposed final budget. To view the full conference committee budget proposal, visit the California Senate Budget and Fiscal Review Committee website.  

CPEHN’s Bills Advance! Your Support is Needed TODAY!

The push for CPEHN’s broad health equity agenda continues. Critical bills need your support! 

  • AB 929 (Luz Rivas), on collecting and reporting of health disparities data within Covered California, is scheduled to be heard in Senate Health on Wednesday, June 19th. This bill is co-sponsored by CPEHN and Health Access California and we appreciate all the support!  
  • AB 318 (Chu), to improve the readability and translation of Medi-Cal documents for consumers, is scheduled to be heard in Senate Health on Wednesday, June 19th. The bill has enjoyed bi-partisan support on its way back through the process.  
  • Share your stories: If you have examples of confusing materials from DHCS or the managed care plans, especially translations, please share them with CPEHN (Marques – and include these stories in your letters of support. 

Thank you for your support! CPEHN will continue to provide you with updates on the status of these and other CPEHN priority bills as they continue through the Legislature. 

Questions? Please contact Linda Tenerowicz, Policy Advocate, at or (916) 447-1299  

© 2019 | California Pan-Ethnic Health Network |

MAIN OFFICE: 1221 Preservation Park Way, Suite 200, Oakland, CA 94612
Phone: (510) 832-1160 | Fax: (510) 832-1175
SACRAMENTO OFFICE: 1107 9th Street, Suite 410, Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: (916) 447-1299 | Fax: (916) 447-1292
LOS ANGELES OFFICE: Phone:(213) 787-1360

By Eve Reiland

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