The undocumented 50 years and older and low-income in California see more and more the possibility of accessing the Medi-Cal public health program, after the approval of the budget of more than 262,000 million dollars that contains funds for this purpose.
The California Legislature approved the $ 262.6 billion budget Monday night, which will include funds to expand the Medi-Cal public health program to state residents age 50 and older regardless of immigration status.
California Governor Gavin Newsom and Democratic Legislature leaders reached an agreement last Friday on the approval of a state budget, but lawmakers must still approve the Medi-Cal plan, something that could happen next Thursday. , according to the specialized magazine Politico.
The funds initially allocated for the expansion of the medical program include the measure in favor of the undocumented, which would make the state the first in the country to grant a public health program to undocumented adults 50 years and older. California already provides this help to minors and young adults without legal status.
The plan, which would take effect in 2022, would cost the state coffers $ 1.3 billion.
Medi-Cal is California’s version of the federal and state Medicaid program for low-income people. In May 2016, the state began offering full Medi-Cal coverage to undocumented immigrant children and youth up to age 19, funded by state funds. Almost 129,000 enrolled in the program in March 2019, based on available data.
When they debated the 2019 budget, lawmakers voted to use more state funds to expand the program to all income eligible adults ages 19-25, making California the first state to offer full Medicaid coverage to adult immigrants. undocumented.
At the beginning of last year, efforts were focused on expanding the public health program to the undocumented persons 65 years of age or older, but the arrival of the coronavirus pandemic forced a halt to the efforts.
In contrast, the state of Illinois in the midst of the covid-19 outbreak became the first US state to extend public health insurance to all low-income non-citizen adults 65 years of age or older, even if they are undocumented.