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Healthy Families to BOOT 670,000 Children

Original post made by Unemployed, Downtown, on Aug 13, 2009

Unless you have lost a job that has not been replaced and are struggling on one or NO income, this would be of no interest to you no doubt, or would it be of interest?

Healthy Families is also provided for underemployed and or the working poors children, that do NOT qualify for medical.

In our case I was laid off last year and have had ZERO luck finding a job. This is shocking and very disturbing to our family. The real bad thing is that in California cutting the program and booting 670,000 children, who will no doubt be flooding the ER rooms, we also loose federal funding!

Despite First 5 Funding, as Many as 800,000 Kids Could Lose Access to Healthy Families Coverage
Children who are eligible for low-cost health coverage through the Healthy Families Program got some good news and some bad news today.

First, the good news: Meeting in Sacramento, the First 5 California Children and Families Commission voted to provide up to $81.4 million of its own tobacco-tax dollars to support enrollment of approximately 200,000 children from birth through age 5 in Healthy Families between August 13, 2009 and June 30, 2010. These First 5 funds will partially close a $194 million state funding shortfall (which primarily stems from cuts included in the July budget agreement); reduce the number of children placed on the Healthy Families waiting list (which was implemented on July 17); and reduce the number of children who eventually could be removed from the program.

Which brings us to the bad news: The Managed Risk Medical Insurance Board (MRMIB), which oversees Healthy Families, voted today to remove children from Healthy Families starting October 1 in order to further reduce program spending and help close the state funding gap. Under this action, families would begin receiving notice of this change in early September. According to an analysis by MRMIB, nearly 670,000 children could be dropped from Healthy Families between October 1, 2009 and June 30, 2010, although it is not clear how many of those children will be supported with First 5 funds and thereby avoid being removed from the program. MRMIB also reviewed other cost-cutting strategies, including eliminating certain Healthy Families benefits and shifting more costs to families, but postponed action on those options pending further analysis. MRMIB is currently scheduled to meet again on August 20 and August 27, at which point the timing of or the need for disenrollment could be revisited.

The bottom line: First 5’s funding will allow about 200,000 children through age 5 who were at risk of losing access to Healthy Families coverage to enroll or remain in the program through next June. However, as many as 800,000 other children could end up on the Healthy Families waiting list or be removed from the program unless additional funds are found to help close the state funding shortfall.

– Scott Graves and Raul Macias

Comments (8)

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Posted by Unemployed
a resident of Downtown
on Aug 13, 2009 at 6:46 pm

Web Link

Children's Advocates Applaud First 5 Commission's Commitment to Support Healthy Families and Children's Health
Advocates Urge MRMIB to Avoid Disenrolling Children from Health Coverage

SACRAMENTO, California - Today, the First 5 California Commission voted to direct $81.4 million to support the Healthy Families Program, and help address the Program's budget deficit created by the Governor and Legislature. At the same time, California's Managed Risk Medical Insurance Board (MRMIB) has decided to begin the process of disenrolling children from Healthy Families in order to address the Program's budget shortfall. On behalf of a coalition of children's advocates, the following is a statement from Wendy Lazarus, Founder and Co-President of The Children's Partnership, regarding today's events:

"We commend the First 5 California Commission for their tremendous leadership to protect the health and lives of children by providing timely and critically needed funding for the Healthy Families Program. Healthy Families has been a lifeline for children to receive crucial health services that prevent minor illness and injury from becoming much more severe and deadly, and allows kids with terrible diseases to get the care they need.

"The Governor and the Legislature's reckless and unconscionable budget cuts had created a $194 million budget gap in Healthy Families, resulting in 1 million children losing access to health coverage over the course of the next year.

"The funds approved by the First 5 Commission will now enable more than 200,000 eligible children (ages 0 to 5) to remain in Healthy Families and continue receiving access to health coverage.

"Yet, we are extremely concerned by MRMIB's decision today to move forward with disenrolling children from Healthy Families to address the Program's remaining budget shortfall. Kicking kids off health coverage should be avoided at all costs, and must be treated as a last resort. Make no mistake about it -- without health coverage, kids will get sicker and some will die.

"We urge MRMIB to take full advantage of the First 5 funding, and to exhaust every possible option and program change to fill the shortfall before taking the drastic and devastating step of denying health coverage to children.

"Fortunately for children, First 5 has once again stepped up to help fill huge funding gaps in Healthy Families. But the ultimate responsibility for preserving the long-term future for Healthy Families rests squarely with the Governor and the Legislature. In the past, the Governor and other state legislative leaders have promised to insure all children and have declared their unwavering support for children's health. It is time they live up to their promises by securing the remainder of the $194 million shortfall before a single child is forced to suffer from the lack of needed health care."

Click here to write to your legislators and to legislative leadership.
Contact the Governor here.

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Posted by Linda
a resident of Del Prado
on Aug 13, 2009 at 7:48 pm


You seem to have been out of work for some time. Have you considered looking for work out of state if nothing is available here? I am not even sure anymore what the unemployment rate is in California but it has to be one of the highest in the nation. It does not appear that any industries are considering expanding in this state so maybe a state which is friendly to business.

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Posted by Unemployed
a resident of Downtown
on Aug 13, 2009 at 9:05 pm


YES I am absolutely looking for work, anywhere in the Country for that matter. Thankfully we NEVER took a DIME out of our home, or refinanced when it tripled in value over the years, so that is a help.

We also have always been good with money, but we’re running out of cushion like many.

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Posted by Linda
a resident of Del Prado
on Aug 13, 2009 at 9:12 pm


I was not trying to stick my nose in your business but wondered as you seem like a nice person. Have you considered Toyota in San Antonio, Texas? Great company and good state for growth and business.

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Posted by Unemployed
a resident of Downtown
on Aug 13, 2009 at 9:15 pm


I appreciate the sincere inquiry. I am in sales and have a 25 year track record which is great, so one would think I could find employment.

What has you mentioning Toyota in TX?

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Posted by Linda
a resident of Del Prado
on Aug 13, 2009 at 9:22 pm


I as reading about them and very impressed with the character of the company. At the very same time that GM, Ford, and Chrysler were laying thousands off and closing plants. Toyota under the same circumstances did not lay off one employee and kept paying them for 5 months even though the plants they worked in were not building cars. They were loaned out the work on habitat for humanity, road construction, community projects etc. That says a lot in my book and will never buy a car other than theirs. I believe them to be the company all should try to be I guess. They look at things long term.

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Posted by Sorry to interrupt
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 13, 2009 at 9:24 pm


Sorry to interrupt your chat with Unemployed, but Toyota is successful because they don't have a Union to bleed them dry. It's a good recommendation.

That said, Toyota will probably have their first US layoff soon if they decide to vacate the NUMMI plant.

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Posted by Linda
a resident of Del Prado
on Aug 13, 2009 at 9:28 pm

Sorry to Interrupt,

Toyota does have union plants. TABC in Long Beach is a union plant as are many of their parts plants. NUMMI is a union plant but Toyota was left holding the bag by our government and also GM. Those poor employees in Fremont are fortunate that Toyota continues to pay them even though they do not have to after GM deserted them at the request of our government.

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