California budget boosts payments for doctors, dentists
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Doctors and dentists who see low-income patients on Medi-Cal are getting a raise for the second year in a row.
The Assembly and Senate on Monday approved more than $2 billion for higher medical and dental payments and loan forgiveness for doctors and dentists who spend much of their time treating Medi-Cal patients.
The money comes from a $2-per-pack tobacco tax increase approved by voters in 2016 and federal matching funds.
One in three Californians is covered by Medi-Cal, which is jointly funded by the state and federal governments. Health care providers have long complained that payments are too low to cover their costs, forcing them to limit the number of low-income patients they can see.
The measure goes to Gov. Jerry Brown, who is expected to sign it.