Re "State aid is relief, burden," Feb. 3
Who are the supporters of national healthcare reform who "tout the expansion of Medicaid — called Medi-Cal in California — as one of the great successes of the Affordable Care Act"? Medi-Cal has been failing since its underfunded inception almost 50 years ago.
Confirmation of eligibility for the program does not guarantee timely healthcare, as the number of physicians in the program is embarrassingly low. The Affordable Care Act, as with our entire dysfunctional healthcare system, guarantees delays, disappointments and, unfortunately, sometimes death to those without the means to buy better care.
My uninsured, disabled son qualified for Medi-Cal and signed up on the last day of eligibility in December. He has yet to hear from the state.
We need a simpler system that covers everyone without confusion and delay. And one we can trust. We need supporters of healthcare reform who are well informed about Medicare for all.
Jerome P. Helman, MD
Let me get this straight: The expansion of Medicaid is being touted as "one of the great successes of the Affordable Care Act." Medicaid is a second-tier program of inferior quality for poor people of all
races, especially blacks and Latinos.
While some may see the cementing of the Medicaid program deeper into the structure of the U.S. healthcare system as one of the Affordable Care Act's positive effects, others are likely to see it as an indicator of an increased level of healthcare inequality (based on income inequality) in this country.
Your article on Obamacare and Medi-Cal described people forced to accept Medi-Cal assistance in paying for health insurance.
The article failed to mention that both California and federal laws impose estate recovery: that is, on the death of a recipient and his or her surviving spouse, the state is required to make a claim on the estate for the cost of aid provided, up to the amount of the estate.
Although those eligible for Medi-Cal may not have substantial estates, and allowances are made for certain dependents, people should not be forced to accept Medi-Cal and have their estates subject to recovery.