Proposition 52

Context: 
The Medi-Cal program will ensure health care benefits to specific low-income Californians. In the past, the state and federal governments had shared the costs of program, with certain exceptions. 

Since 2009, most private hospitals are charged about $4.6 billion to fund the Medi-Cal benefits. The Legislature has extended this fee numerous times, and may extend it once more beyond its current ending date, January 1, 2018.

What does Proposition 52 do? 

Proposition 52 would make this fee to hospitals permanent, using the money to fund the care of the estimated 13 million low income Californians. 

At the same time, it provides approximately $4.6 billion dollars to CEOs and hospital lobbyists, along with the lack of a concrete guarantee all of the money will be directed to the care of those who require medical assistance.

What Do the Votes Mean?

A “yes” vote is for requiring voter approval to change the use of specific fees from hospitals used as federal cash and fund California medical services.

A “no” vote opposes this, enabling the legislature to eliminate/alter the hospital fee program.

The usual majority vote is 1/5ths in the favor of yes – the main ideas supporting either side are:

It is uncertain where the money is directed for it could be being falsely used by CEOs of larger companies and breaks the trust of taxpayers.

The medical community already receives immense amounts of cash (near the amount gained from the proposition itself).

This enactment aids people of lower social status, lower-income families, and children.

Who’s For? Who’s Against?

Big corporations seem to support the propositions. More than $3,000,000 would be gained without guarantee of help to patients.

There is only one group that put 4.8 million dollars towards opposition campaign against this healthcare (SEIU United Healthcare Workers West).

The lower income medical workers seem against this decision, likely due to the “no strings attached” nature of the fees, and the possibilities regarding inappropriate usage of the money by large organizations. 

Since it began, the Legislature has extended the fee four times, and could potentially extend it again beyond its current ending date of January 1, 2018. Any extension of the fee by the Legislature afterwards must be approved.  

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