When enacted, the California Universal Healthcare Act will create a single-payer public agency to organize a system that, once funded, will make it possible for every resident of California to receive comprehensive health care services. Individuals will have free choice of licensed health professionals and services. Covered benefits will include services to keep people healthy—mentally and physically—as well as those services that diagnose and treat diseases. In addition to emergency services, surgeries, and hospital stays, services such as case management, home health care, day care, and hospice are covered. Vision and dental care are also included.
The bill outlines a process for the transition to a single-payer system that is allowed to take up to four years before full implementation. It will set into motion steps to set up the structure, financing and oversight of the system. As specified, the Premium Commission will send a draft of financing recommendations to the governor, the legislature, and the public 90 days before submitting the final premium structure recommendation. The provisions of the Health Care Act will only go into effect when the Secretary of California Health and Human Services notifies the legislature that sufficient funding exists to implement the system.
The California Universal Health Care Act has been crafted to include many checks and balances to provide high quality care for all California residents in a manner that is financially sustainable. Regional planning will take place to reduce overlap and duplication of expensive equipment and facilities. Participants in the transition groups will include diverse stakeholders including ordinary citizens and representatives of labor and business, as well as various health care professionals and health policy experts.