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Past Press Releases

August 1, 2017, Sacramento, CA. Today, Covered California released its 2018 plan rates demonstrating once again the strength of California’s marketplace. The filings outline what health plans will charge consumers for monthly premiums on the exchange starting next year.  

The California Pan-Ethnic Health Network (CPEHN) condemns today’s vote (217-213) in the U.S. House of Representatives that would result in more than 24 million Americans losing their health care coverage. The Republican’s American Health Care Act (AHCA) includes new provisions that threaten people with pre-existing conditions despite promises made by the Trump Administration to leave these important protections in place.

The House and Senate Republicans are attempting to pass a health care bill that will be devastating to the health of California seniors, children and communities of color. The proposed bill would strip away healthcare from 20 million Americans and repeal consumer protections for millions of Californians.

In a new Spanish-language marketing campaign, Congressional Republicans say that the Affordable Care Act will be replaced with something better. They’re offering false promises and putting lives in danger. 

OAKLAND, CA – Today, Governor Jerry Brown strengthened access to important health insurance information for Limited English Proficient (LEP) Californians by signing Senate Bill 388 into law. The new law, authored by Senator Holly J. Mitchell (D-Los Angeles) and sponsored by the California Pan-Ethnic Health Network (CPEHN), requires a health insurance plan’s summary of benefits and coverage (SBC) to be translated into non-English languages spoken by a significant portion of their enrollees. The summary of benefits and coverage (SBC) outlines important information in a health insurance plan including the benefits, costs, and coverage limitations for each health plan. The Department of Managed Health Care and the Department of Insurance are also required to make translated templates of the SBC and glossaries of common insurance terms available on their websites.

SACRAMENTO – Today, Governor Jerry Brown signed SB 137, a bill by Senator Ed Hernandez, to ensure accurate, updated, and standardized provider directories. Co-sponsored by California Pan-Ethnic Health Network (CPEHN), Consumers Union, and Health Access California, SB 137 will:

  • Make updated provider directories available to consumers both when they are shopping for plans and when they are using their benefits.
  • Update provider directories weekly—better than the federal standard of at least monthly.
  • Providing accurate information on important specifics such as office location and whether the provider is accepting new patients.
  • Allow consumers from diverse backgrounds to identify health plans and providers that can best meet their needs by indicating what languages other than English (if any) providers and their staff speak (for more details and rationale, see separate SB 137 fact sheet).

OAKLAND, Calif. – Today, Governor Jerry Brown continued California’s commitment to language access in health care by signing Assembly Bill 389 into law. The new law, authored by Assemblymember Ed Chau (D-Monterey Park) and sponsored by the California Pan-Ethnic Health Network (CPEHN), directs a general acute hospital to post its language assistance policy for Limited English Proficient (LEP) individuals online and requires hospital websites to include a notice about the availability of those services in the five most common non-English languages.

OAKLAND, Calif. – On September 29th, Governor Jerry Brown signed into law critical consumer protections for Limited English Proficient individuals in the Medi-Cal program. Assembly Bill 505 codifies the language assistance requirements in Medi-Cal managed care plans. Authored by Assemblymember Adrin Nazarian (District 46) and sponsored by the California Pan-Ethnic Health Network (CPEHN), AB 505 cements as law health plan requirements to provide oral interpretation and written translation services to their LEP enrollees.

OAKLAND, Calif. – On September 25th, Governor Jerry Brown helped solidify California’s commitment to ensuring access to healthy foods when he signed Senate Bill 912 into law. Authored by Senator Holly J. Mitchell (D-Los Angeles), the bill is co-sponsored by the California Pan-Ethnic Health Network (CPEHN), the California Center for Health Policy Advocacy (CCPHA), and the American Heart Association. 

OAKLAND, Calif. – On September 18th, Governor Jerry Brown helped California take an important step in identifying shortages in the health care workforce by signing Assembly Bill 2102, which facilitates the collection of demographic data within allied health professions. Authored by Assemblymember Phil Ting (D - San Francisco), the new law is co-sponsored by the California Pan-Ethnic Health Network (CPEHN) and the Latino Coalition for a Healthy California (LCHC).

OAKLAND, Calif. – On Sunday, ethnic health leaders in California will celebrate the fourth anniversary of President Barack Obama’s signing of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). As of January 1st, the ACA has extended access to affordable health coverage to millions of Californians through the expansion of Medi-Cal and the operation of Covered California. The law has had a particular impact on the state’s communities of color, who represent a majority of those who are eligible to enroll in the new health coverage options now available.

OAKLAND, Calif. – Today, California committed to implementing a major aspect of the national Affordable Care Act (ACA) when Governor Jerry Brown signed into law legislation that will expand the Medi-Cal program. The state’s ethnic health leaders praised the state’s decision to expand the program to include childless adults and those earning up to 138% of the Federal Poverty Level ($15,856 for an individual). The expansion will bring health coverage to more than 1.4 million adults, two-thirds (67%) of whom will be from communities of color and one-third will speak English less than very well. The expansion will be fully funded by the federal government for the first three years.

OAKLAND, Calif. – Today, ethnic health leaders in California celebrated the 3-year anniversary of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) and how it has improved the health of communities of color. The anniversary comes at a time when the state is entering the final stages of implementing the law, which will result in over 4 million Californians, two-thirds of whom come from communities of color, gaining access to affordable coverage through the expansion of MediCal and the establishment of the state’s Health Benefit Exchange, Covered California. While taking time to celebrate, the state’s ethnic health leaders also acknowledged that now is a critical time for advocates to make sure the law achieves its full potential. 

OAKLAND, Calif. – Communities of color could see significant improvements in their health through strategic use of emerging technologies in health care, according to a new report, Equity in the Digital Age: How Health Information Technology Can Reduce Disparities. The report was released today by health and consumer advocacy organizations at a White House Summit on Achieving eHealth Equity hosted by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, Office of Minority Health, and ZeroDivide.

OAKLAND, Calif. – California’s ethnic health leaders praised the state’s decision to expand the Medi-Cal program in the budget proposal released today, but expressed concerns about the potential impact on county safety-net programs. Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), states can expand Medi-Cal to childless adults earning up to 138% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL), which will be fully funded by the federal government from 2014-2016.

OAKLAND, Calif. – Influential ethnic health leaders from across California expressed support today for Proposition 30, a ballot initiative spearheaded by Governor Jerry Brown that would raise much-needed revenues to support the state’s K-12 schools, community colleges, and public safety infrastructure. The current state budget, approved in June, relies heavily on the passage of this ballot proposal, which is expected to generate between $6.8 and $9 billion in funds for 2012-13 and between $5.4 and $7.6 billion the following six years after which the taxes expire. These revenues will be raised by increasing the personal income tax rate for the state’s wealthiest residents and temporarily raises the state sales tax by a quarter of a cent. 

OAKLAND, Calif. – On September 19th, Governor Jerry Brown led California forward in creating transportation policy that supports health when he signed into law Assembly Bill 441. Authored by Assemblymember Bill Monning (District 27), the new law instructs the California Transportation Commission (CTC) to create a summary of local transportation projects that promote health and equity in the state’s Regional Transportation Planning (RTP) Guidance. The bill, co-sponsored by the California Pan-Ethnic Health Network (CPEHN) and TransForm, was adapted from recommendations of the state Strategic Growth Council’s Health in All Policies Task Force.

OAKLAND, Calif. – The Supreme Court today ruled to uphold the landmark Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), and leaders of California’s four major ethnic groups and multicultural network were quick to applaud the decision. Chief Justice John Roberts gave the majority opinion, which declared the entire law constitutional, including the Medicaid expansion and the individual mandate, which survived as a tax. This decision reaffirms the nation’s commitment to improving our health care system, and preserves a law that has already expanded health coverage for millions of Californians including low-income adults, children under the age of 26, and patients with preexisting conditions. Many low-income communities of color—who comprise close to three-quarters of the uninsured in CA—have already begun to benefit from the ACA and now efforts to expand access to health care in these communities can continue to gain momentum. 

Los Angeles – Today, Senator Ted Lieu (D-Torrance) unveiled SB 1313, legislation designed to help consumers from California’s increasingly diverse communities take full advantage of new health care programs under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the far-reaching federal reform law celebrating its two-year anniversary this week. The proposed legislation would put in place new consumer protections against fraudulent or deceptive health care marketing. Senator Lieu was accompanied by key community groups supporting the bill.

OAKLAND, Calif. — Leaders of California’s four major ethnic groups are celebrating the second anniversary of President Obama’s signing of the landmark Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), which expanded health coverage for millions of Californians including low-income adults, children under the age of 26, and children and adults with pre-existing conditions. Many lowincome communities of color, who comprise close to three-quarters of the uninsured in CA, have already begun to benefit from the ACA. 

OAKLAND, Calif. – Language barriers could deter more than 100,000 Californians from enrolling in the Health Benefit Exchange (Exchange), according to a study released today by the California Pan-Ethnic Health Network (CPEHN), the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, and the UC Berkeley Center for Labor Research and Education. 

OAKLAND, Calif. – California’s two-third vote requirement and an unwillingness on the part of a handful of legislators to compromise on a revenue package, is once again to blame for a harsh 2012-13 budget package that hits communities of color the hardest. The proposal continues to slash funding for basic health and human services programs including Medi-Cal and CalWORKs, California’s primary work support program, which are relied on by millions in these hard economic times. 

OAKLAND, Calif. – As part of the First Lady’s Let’s Move Initiative, the US Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) unveiled their new healthy food service guidelines, which they will begin implementing within their departments. The Health and Sustainability Guidelines for Federal Concessions and Vending Operations promotes a healthier workforce by making healthy food options more accessible and affordable.

OAKLAND, Calif. – One year ago, President Barack Obama signed the landmark Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) into law. Six months after the law went into effect many of California’s eight million uninsured have benefited from provisions that expanded coverage, enhanced oversight of insurance companies to protect consumers, and limited the cost of care. The ACA’s newest provisions, which went into effect in January, have increased funding for community health centers, provided incentives for practitioners to work in underserved areas, and required insurers to disclose the percentage of premium dollars spent on medical care. California’s communities of color applaud these changes to the health care system and recognize this significant anniversary.

OAKLAND, Calif. – Governor Schwarzenegger’s recent appointments to California ’s Health Benefit Exchange Board of Susan Kennedy, his Chief of Staff, and Kim Belshé, the outgoing Secretary for California 's Health and Human Services Agency, highlight the need for Board appointments that reflect the racial and ethnic diversity of California as mandated by California ’s landmark Health Benefit Exchange legislation.