California Covered has problems

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Hundreds of thousands of medical patients in California still do not have health care coverage, even though they have enrolled.

They did their part, applied for coverage, and the law says the state has to grant them health care coverage in 45 days.

It has now gone beyond 90 days, and some still do not have coverage. Now, they are going to court.

The problem is once again being placed on computer related issues. But the fundamental problem is Medi-Cal has expanded greatly, but the resources to handle these patients has not.

“They’re under pressure from the media, they’re under pressure form the public. There’s now a lawsuit about this delayed enrollment, and the state is making efforts to catch up,” said Dr. Mazer.

The County Medical Society’s Dr. Ted Mazer says the state knew it would get at least a million new enrollees. Its focus was solely on getting people into the system without sufficiently explaining how that is done, he said.

“If you don’t think you have the resources including the hardware, and the software to move forward, then why were we so gung-ho to be the first state to say we’re gonna expand, we’re gonna bring everybody in,” said Dr. Mazer.

“The state dropped the ball, the counties didn’t have the resources. The state allocated very insufficient resources as it has always done in the medical program whether it’s for the administrative side like enrolling people, or the provision of services for hospitals and doctors,” he added.

What do all these medical beneficiaries do when they need health care?

“They’re no easy answer unfortunately. It means people don’t go and get care, or they do what they’ve always done, they go to emergency room. At the most expensive point of access, the emergency room has to see them without paying up front and then maybe the emergency room may get paid,” said Dr. Mazer.

But at a rate that will be subsidized by the taxpayers, assuming all of this gets worked out, but there is still a problem with Medi-Cal patients actually getting access to care.

With another enrollment period less than two months away, they need to fix the problem soon.

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