July 27, 2021
Brandon Richards, Director of Communications
SACRAMENTO — Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California (PPAC) released the following statement from President/CEO Jodi Hicks regarding Governor Gavin Newsom signing AB 133, the Health Care Omnibus Budget trailer bill:
“With this budget, the state is demonstrating its continued trust and investment in the public health care system to advance equitable health care access.”
“The investments today include supporting technological advancements that expand health care delivery, such as audio and video telehealth capabilities and broadband coverage, and investing in community education and outreach programs that provide critical linkages to care in California’s most hard-to-reach communities. However, while the 2021-2022 budget makes important strides in working towards a stronger public health care infrastructure and addressing racial justice, there is no question there is still work to be done and additional investments to be made to bring health equity to every corner of California. Thankfully, we know Governor Newsom and our many legislative champions will continue to lead the way.”
On behalf of the seven affiliates throughout California and 100+ Planned Parenthood health centers, PPAC looks forward to working with Governor Newsom’s administration in its new role as a member of the advisory group on the future of telehealth access. Alongside state legislative leaders, PPAC will continue advocating for telehealth access for millions of Medi-Cal patients throughout the state, including Planned Parenthood patients.
- Telehealth. Extends the current Public Health Emergency flexibilities, including full telehealth funding for audio and video visits, to continue through December 31, 2022 and names PPAC to an advisory group to develop future DHCS telehealth policy.
- Lab Rates. Medi-Cal Reimbursements for laboratory services will no longer be subject to an 80% of Medicare cap starting in 2022. This eliminates an outdated policy that will allow full funding for critical labs like STI and HIV testing.
- Covered CA Abortion Coverage Premium. Ends the requirement for Californians to pay a $1 premium for Covered CA health plans. The Affordable Care Act requires that health plans in Exchanges separate premiums into two payments, one for abortion coverage, and one for all other health care services. Going forward, Covered California will make these $1 payments directly to health plans.
- Health4All Expansion. Expands Medi-Cal eligibility to all income eligible Californians 50 years and older, regardless of immigration status.
- CalWORKs Pregnancy Aid. Provides $17 million ongoing to allow a pregnant person to receive aid to meet special needs resulting from pregnancy upon verification of pregnancy and increases the CalWORKs pregnancy supplement from $47 to $100. [Included in AB 135]
- Medi-Cal Asset Test Removal. Includes a Care4All priority to eliminate the Medi-Cal asset test for seniors to remove the “senior savings” penalty, to expand access to more income eligible Californians.
Planned Parenthood Affiliates of California (PPAC) is the state public policy office representing California’s seven separately incorporated Planned Parenthood affiliates. Through advocacy and electoral action, PPAC promotes sound public policy in areas of sexual and reproductive health care and sex education.