NewsLocal News


Newsom proposes health care for all, including low-income undocumented Californians

Posted at 5:57 AM, Jan 11, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-11 08:57:07-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Every Californian could soon have access to health care if Gov. Newsom's new budget proposal is approved.

The health care for all proposal would include undocumented Californians. The state already pays health care costs for low-income immigrants ages 26 and under, and in May, it will cover people ages 50 and older.

Immigration advocates say this is welcome news.

“It’s monumental and really important because this population oftentimes does get forgotten in conversations,” says Lupe Flores, the Director of Engagement and Impact for The Chicano Federation of San Diego County.

Others, like local Assemblywoman Marie Waldron, say Newsom's plan is not the answer, pointing out an already overwhelmed Medi-Cal system.

“To expand that system without fixing it is definitely the wrong approach,” says Waldron.

If the plan is approved, it would mean coverage for nearly 700,000 more Californians that local groups say play a major role in the state's economy.

“They've been our essential workers, they've been our farm workers in California and have played a huge role in not only getting out of the pandemic but recovery,” says Flores.

Waldron worries the system would be impacted, similar to the federal VA program for veterans, leading to longer wait times for all.

“The wait times there, we can expect similar things or worse if we expand a system that's already broken,” says Waldron.

If the proposal is approved, it would be implemented in January 2024.