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Analysis: Golden State Health Plan Takes the Gold Over MA

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 By Deborah Smith/Chris Thomas, Contact
January 16, 2008

Sacramento, CA – A sweeping new healthcare reform plan proposed for California is going to be expensive, but it does contain measures designed to contain costs.

According to a new analysis comparing the two, that puts the California plan ahead of the healthcare reform program approved in Massachusetts two years ago.

Anthony Wright with Health Access California says the pending "California Health Security and Cost Reduction Act" includes cost-containment features that Massachusetts is just now exploring, including lower prescription prices.

"An ability for a statewide purchasing pool to really negotiate with drug companies, with insurers, for the best possible price."

The analysis comes as a new poll of voters by The Commonwealth Fund shows most people want insurance coverage for all Americans, and they want state and federal governments to help make it affordable. Critics say the California proposal is too expensive even with the cost controls it includes. However, Wright says addressing costs is something the California legislation does, by recognizing that new money will be needed.

"Whether it's through a tobacco tax, employer contribution, new federal funds – to improve our health care system not only for the uninsured, but for the insured, as well."

The analysis is at
www.health-access.org

The Commonwealth Fund poll is at
www.commonwealthfund.org


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