KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

California Revives Bill To Create Single-Payer Health Care System

The Associated Press/Los Angeles Times: "A key legislative committee in California revived a bill Thursday to create a government-run health care system in the nation's most populous state ...  The legislation had been held over from last year because of the state's ongoing budget crisis. The full Senate could vote on the bill by next week. Creating a single-payer system would cost California an estimated $210 billion in its first year. That's roughly double the size of the total state budget..." (Thompson, 1/21).

The New York Times reports: "The bill is not the first attempt to set up a single-payer system in California, which has some 6.5 million uninsured. Two previous single-payer bills were passed by the legislature in recent years, only to be vetoed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who tried and failed to establish his own universal health care plan at the start of his second term in 2007" (McKinley, 1/21).

Meanwhile, Reuters reports that the "California Supreme Court on Thursday rejected limits on medical marijuana imposed by state lawmakers, finding that people with prescriptions for pot can have and grow all they need for personal use. The high court ruled lawmakers improperly 'amended' the voter-approved law that decriminalized possession of marijuana for "'seriously ill Californians' with a doctor's prescription by limiting'" the amounts (Keating, 1/21).

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