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TO ACTION - SB 921
Comprehensive Health Care Coverage
SB 921 (Kuehl), Health Care for
All Californians Act
SB 921 (Kuehl) is now before the Assembly Health Committee, and will
be heard June 22. This hearing is of greatest importance since it is the
only action planned for SB 921 during the 2004 legislative year.
IF YOUR ASSEMBLY MEMBER IS A MEMBER OF THIS COMMITTEE, PLEASE
CALL, WRITE, OR FAX A LETTER IMMEDIATELY TO EXPRESS YOUR SUPPORT!
Contacts are especially needed for a few
assembly members who may be supportive but have not committed to vote
for the bill. Important points to make are listed
- Members of the Assembly Health Committee are: Assembly Members Cohn
[chair], Spitzer [vice-chair],Chan, Chavez, Dutton, Dymally, Frommer,
Koretz, Lieber, Montanez, Nakanishi, Nakano, Negrete McLeod, Pacheco,
Richman, Ridley-Thomas, Salinas, and Wolk.
- Forward this alert to people you know with a request for immediate
- Thank assembly members who support
LEAGUE POSITION: The LWVUS Health Care position promotes
a health care system for the United States that provides access to a basic
level of quality care for all U.S. residents and controls health care
BACKGROUND: SB 921 (Kuehl), the Health Care for All
Californians Act, uses a "single payer" model to provide health care coverage
to all Californians through a single health care system. The state of
California would administer the system and control the growth of health
care spending through a simplified administrative structure, consolidated
financing and purchasing, and statewide health planning. Health care delivery
within the system would remain private, and providers would be reimbursed
for their services from the system's single state health care fund. Health
care decisions would be made by the patient and his or her health care
provider. Patients would be free to chose the provider of their choice
at all times.
IMPORTANT POINTS ABOUT SB 921:
- SB 921 corrects the underlying problems of inefficiency, waste, and
partial or no coverage that continue to undermine California's health
care system. High administrative costs, overpriced pharmaceuticals, unneeded
capital expenditures, and unnecessary emergency room use by uninsured
and underinsured persons place a burden on all of us.
- SB 921 provides for universal coverage and comprehensive benefits
while making very significant state savings in health care spending. In
the short run, it adds no new spending for health care, but shifts funds
from administration to the provision of services to more people. In the
long run it controls the growth in health care spending.
- SB 921 provides tools for effective cost control which would greatly
reduce the cost of health care administration from approximately 30 percent
under the current system to five percent. These tools include statewide
consolidated administration; bulk purchasing power to gain pharmaceutical
discounts; an annual state health care budget with caps, adjusted for
economic growth, to allow the plan to provide stable and predictable revenues
for hospitals, clinics and providers; integrated statewide health care
planning; and universal primary and preventive care.
- SB 921 provides full health coverage and security for every California
resident, including prescription drugs and mental health coverage, regardless
of income or employment. The uninsured and underinsured would have health
benefits, and no one would ever lose coverage because of employment status
or be denied coverage due to a preexisting condition.
- SB 921 would sustain fair and full compensation for providers and
provider services and give relief to counties and the state which have
had to provide the "safety net" for uninsured Californians.
- SB 921 would provide for fair cost sharing, spreading the cost of
health care across society.
- SB 921 provides for a governance structure which is publicly accountable
and provides strong controls to maintain a stable system for delivery
of quality care.
FOR MORE INFORMATION: Please see "Additional
Background for SB 921" or contact the LWV California Health Care Program Director at firstname.lastname@example.org.
NOTES: Address letters to:
The Honorable (full name of assembly member)
California State Assembly
P.O. Box 942849
Sacramento, CA 94249-0001
Re: Comprehensive Health Care Coverage SB 921
Dear Assembly Member (last name of assembly member):
Mail/fax letters to the assembly member's Sacramento office and to the
district office if you have a strong relationship with the district staff.