SB-4: Healthcare for Undocumented Children

Session: 2015-2016
Author: Lara
Status: Signed into Law (Chaptered)
AAP-CA Position: Support
To view the status of this bill on the State Website, click here.

The bill makes important changes to ensure successful implementation of the recent Health for All Kids budget action that will cover all income-eligible children under the state Medi-Cal program.

Recent changes to state law through the 2015-2016 budget ensure that low income children and youth regardless of immigration status will be eligible for Medi-Cal SB 4 (Lara) (i) clarifies that kids currently enrolled in restricted scope emergency Medi-Cal will not be required to submit a new application when they transition to full-scope coverage, (ii) ensures that kids currently enrolled in restricted scope emergency Medi-Cal will be transferred to full scope services immediately, as soon the program is operational (May 1, 2016), and (iii) ensures that kids with serious medical conditions that require specialist care who are being newly enrolled in the program will be properly evaluated and referred.

SB 4 (Lara)  Letter of support to Governor

AAP Positional Letter

The Honorable Ed Hernandez, O.D.
Chair, Senate Health Committee
State Capitol, Room 2191
Sacramento, CA 95814


Dear Senator Hernandez,

The American Academy of Pediatrics, California, representing 5,000 board-certified pediatricians statewide, strongly supports SB 4 (Lara) the “Health For All Act” to expand access to healthcare coverage to all Californians, regardless of immigration status. SB 4 would remove barriers to the health insurance market by directing the state to seek permission from the federal government to allow undocumented Californians to purchase their own health coverage through the Covered California Health Insurance Exchange. SB 4 would also expand Medi-Cal to include individuals who would qualify for enrollment in the program based on their income, but who are denied based on their immigration status.

Current policy specifically excludes undocumented immigrants from insurance coverage provided through Medi-Cal, and even prohibits individuals from purchasing their own insurance through the health care exchange.. Yet the evidence is clear that the health of a parent has a ripple effect onto the health of his or her children. Pediatricians support health coverage for all, as it is an important factor in protecting and promoting the health of California’s children.

Pediatricians urge your AYE vote on SB 4.

Thank you for your consideration of this important legislation.

Kris Sig

Kris Calvin
Chief Executive Officer
American Academy of Pediatrics, California