by jerry on February 21, 2021
Kaiser Health News reported on a legislative initiative to move California to a single-payer healthcare system. About 20 state assembly members have indicated support for the legislation. Of note, analysis of a prior single-payer proposal projected the cost at $400 billion, which is approximately twice the governor's proposed state budget of $227 billion. The assembly member who introduced the bill seems to think current funding for health care (probably including privately paid premiums) might be re-routed to pay for the proposal.
The proposal appears generous, ending all out-of-pocket costs (even copays and deductibles). However, requiring all Californians to enroll in the new plan might require federal regulatory changes. Coupled with the big price tag and a lack of a clear funding mechanism, it seems unlikely that the legislation will pass in this season. The effort is, however, another example of people being interested in single-payer health care.