Medi-Cal Cuts Will Eliminate or Reduce Access to Necessary Services

Medi-Cal Cuts Will Eliminate or Reduce Access to Necessary Services

This post is part 4 of our 12-part “Protect Medi-Cal Funding” series. Medi-Cal provides a long-term investment that helps Californians succeed. This blog series highlights the importance of Medi-Cal covered services.

California’s Medicaid program, Medi-Cal, offers a comprehensive service package that addresses the health needs of low-income individuals and families in the state. The American Health Care Act (AHCA) passed by House Republicans cuts federal Medicaid spending by $834 billion over ten years.

In addition, the recently released White House budget proposes to further cut federal Medicaid spending by an estimated $1.3 trillion over the next decade. These Medicaid funding cuts will shift costs to the state, and invariably lead to cuts in services, which will disproportionately impact children, pregnant women, older adults, and individuals with disabilities.

Faced with these cuts, the state may:

  • Seek to reduce or eliminate coverage of critical, yet optional, Medi-Cal services such as home and community-based services that allow older adults and children/adults with disabilities to remain in their home instead of institutional care.
  • Enact more utilization controls, such as prior authorization, caps, or cost-sharing to restrict or delay access to Medi-Cal services.
  • Limit services related to new epidemics, technologies, or treatments since the state would have to assume the cost of these services with no additional federal support.

Check out our Protect Medi-Cal Series, Issue Brief #4, for a “deeper dive” on the importance of Medi-Cal covered services, and how they are threatened by Medicaid funding cuts.

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