All Californians, particularly those living in the state’s most vulnerable communities, should have access to quality health care services. The program areas in this portfolio seek to make health care systems and organizations stronger, more equitable and more effective.
We believe that health care is a human right and that all Californians, regardless of immigration status, should have access to quality, affordable health coverage and health care. The Affordable Care Act has expanded health coverage for Californians. However, over 7% of Californians remain uninsured, and half of these individuals are undocumented immigrants. We fund community-based organizations, research and advocacy groups, and others working to ensure the effective and equitable implementation of the ACA, and to advance universal health coverage in California.
In low-income areas and communities of color, people’s health is disproportionately affected by inadequate access to primary care services. Nonprofit community clinics are the main providers of basic health care services to people without health coverage or those on public programs like Medi-Cal. Cal Wellness aims to help clinics maintain and expand their services and strengthen their capacity so that all people can have access to quality health care.
Oral health care in the California, as well as in the U.S. as a whole, provides a clear example of health inequity. Both age and income status limit access to quality oral health care. Medicare does not cover dental care, leaving seniors to scramble for access. Medi-Cal’s dental benefits for low-income adults are incomplete and subject to elimination. And the Affordable Care Act does not require dental care for adults to be offered as an essential health benefit. We seek to address the well-documented gaps in access to, coverage for and quality of oral health care for low-income adults and seniors.