A Senate bill introduced by Senator Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) to extend subsidized health benefits and Medi-Cal to illegal immigrants throughout all of California was shot down on Friday but could be revived if SB 1005’s supporters find a way to pay for its expansion.
“Expanding healthcare for all Californians is not a question of if but … a matter of when,” said Lara at Friday’s hearing. He and his advocates, including Senator Ken de León (D-Los Angeles), were allowed the summer to generate a means to fund their proposed expansion, according to The Sacremento Bee.
Although California currently offers health care to undocumented immigrants, the coverage is inconsistent among different counties.
Just this month, Lara had penned SB 1159. That bill would allow illegal immigrants in California to substitute a social security number with a federal taxpayer ID to obtain professional licensing designations. This would include a license to practice medicine and other healthcare professions.