Governor’s Health Commission Activities Suspended

Governor’s Health Commission Activities Suspended


After four public hearings, the California Health and Human Services Agency has suspended the activities of the Healthy California for All Commission for the remainder of 2020. This is the commission that has a two-year mandate to plan for achieving “unified financing” to cover health care for all residents in the state, “including but not limited to single payer”.

These options are to be guided by five principles: Accessible, Affordable, Equitable, High Quality, and Universal. The Commission’s final report for recommending design options is February 2021.

In announcing the hiatus in commission activity until February 2021, the agency cited “enormous challenges on both the public health and economic fronts” that are the “immediate priority and focus of the Agency.” Additionally, the announcement says that by February, “we should know more about California’s economy…as well as know more about the national landscape.”

During this hiatus, the Agency encourages Californians to review and provide comments on a report prepared this summer by consultants to the Commission: An Environmental Analysis of Health Care Delivery, Coverage, and Financing in California.

The report will go to the governor and legislature, and comments will be part of the public record. Comments must conform to the guidelines below to be posted on the website in proximity to the report and become part of the public record.

The email subject line must say “Environmental Analysis Comments”.
It must be submitted as a PDF document, which does not exceed 5,000 words in length.
Links to material, which is publicly accessible, may be included within the PDF.
Attachments are not allowed.
It is imperative that single payer supporters read the report and provide comments to the Commission before the deadline

**Submit your comments to HealthyCAforAll [at] ASAP!

The report reviews the status and challenges of health care financing and delivery in California today but falls short of presenting a clear and appropriate direction for the continuing work of the Commission in its pursuit of high quality, equitable, and affordable health care for all Californians.

The Commission, with 13 voting members and 5 ex-officio members ( see the CHHS website, for details), includes a handful of strong single payer champions, including Carmen Comsti, Dr. Rupa Marya, Sarah Flocks, and William Hsiao, Harvard economist and architect of the successful Taiwanese single-payer system. However, it appears that a number of other voting and ex-officio members, and in particular the consulting team, prefer “building on the ACA”.

It is time to stop the delays and denials by profit-driven stakeholders who are profiting from this crisis while millions lose their health care and financial footing. It is time to tell the governor and legislature we will not tolerate political and professional enablers who support this inhumanity.

We must respond to this report with a clear message: There is one proven “unified financing” system able to right past wrongs and guarantee all of us the health care we need and deserve. It’s single payer. We want the future work of this Commission to focus on getting us there, consistent with their official charge. Personalize, using your own words about how such a change will help
you, your family, businesses, delivery of care etc.

In 2019, SB 104 budgeted 5 million dollars to form the Commission. Their charge is to guide the Governor and Legislature of California’s existing health care delivery system and recommend options to transition to a “unified financing system".

Given limited and unpredictable resources, this is the time, like no other, for sound decision-making. A long-term sustainable recovery for the state depends on it.

The Governor repeatedly says his decisions are based on science and on the evidence. Thus, we need to hold the Governor, his administration and the legislators accountable.

After 30 years of piecemeal measures, symbolic gestures, commissions and investigations, it is time to move to a single-payer healthcare financing system as soon as possible!

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