January 10, 2023
California Medical Association (CMA) President Donaldo Hernandez, M.D., FACP, issued the following statement in response to Gov. Gavin Newsom's January budget:
“The nearly 50,000 physicians, residents and medical student members of the California Medical Association (CMA) share the state’s goal to achieve universal health care coverage—it is making a significant difference in the lives of Californians. However, Medi-Cal coverage must provide meaningful access to health care services to the people it serves. The state has twice cut Medi-Cal rates (in 2008 and 2011) and has not made an across-the-board increase since the early '90s, despite the increased cost of combating the pandemic and now inflation—this has created an access crisis. Medi-Cal coverage must result in equity, access and justice in health care.
"The Managed Care Organization (MCO) tax must be used to improve the Medi-Cal program. Health care dollars must stay in health care. We look forward to working with the Governor’s administration to build upon its landmark gains in expanding health care coverage by becoming the first state to achieve universal health care. As the fourth largest economy in the world, California has the chance to truly ensure all California patients get the care they need when they need it by investing in the Medi-Cal system.”