The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted on May 16 to hire a consultant to develop a plan for how to deal with the loss of $7.6 billion a year if Obamacare is repealed.
Since 2014, Obamacare has allowed Democrats to spend about $20 billion per year to expand Medi-Cal (Medicaid) healthcare coverage to 4.6 million state residents. The epicenter of this tsunami of federal cash has been Los Angeles County.
The U.S. House of Representatives Republicans passed the American Health Care Act on a strict party line vote on May 4. The Obamacare repeal would end the Medicaid Expansion in 31 states to save more than $800 billion over the next decade, if passed by the Senate.
The latest U.S. Census report for July 2016 reveals that Los Angeles County, with a population of 10,137,915, accounts for about 3 percent of America’s population of 325,063,455, and about 26 percent of California’s 39,250,017 residents.
With 3,820,220 members signed up for Medi-Cal, the county also accounts for 38 percent of California’s free Medi-Cal healthcare coverage, according to the California Department of Healthcare Services. Receiving about 10 percent of Obamacare’s nationwide spending, L.A. County is at risk of losing $7.6 billion of cash flow if Obamacare is eventually repealed.
Reuters reported May 17 that a dozen Republican governors that signed up for the Medicaid expansion, led by Governor John Kasich of Ohio, are furiously lobbying the U.S. Senate to maintain Obamacare’s cash flow.
But with the Congressional Budget Office warning that the U.S. budget deficit will grow over the next three decades from 2.9 percent of U.S. Gross Domestic Product in 2017 to 9.8 percent in 2047, political leaders from both parties are becoming concerned with the solvency of the United States.
Their concern is reflected in the latest Rasmussen Poll, revealing that only 18 percent of American voters are opposed to any changes in Obamacare.
NPR reported that L.A. County Chief Executive Officer Sachi Hama recommended to the Board of Supervisors that they temporarily reinstate retired health policy adviser Fred Leaf to develop contingency and transition plans for the end of Obamacare.
The L.A. County Department of Health Services (DHS), which employs a staff of 19,000 to operate four hospitals and 19 health centers, warned that its revenue would crash from $4 billion to $3.1 billion if the Medicaid expansion is terminated.