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Superior court judge rules on free health care



A Superior Court judge has issued a tentative ruling supporting San Diego County's income limit for people to qualify for free medical services. Advocates for the poor argue the threshold is unfair. KPBS Reporter Kenny Goldberg has the story.

Counties are required by law to provide medical care to the indigent. San Diego has set an upper income limit of $1,078 a month to qualify for the County Medical Services program.

Attorney Katie Murphy is with the Western Center on Law and Poverty. She contends $1,078 is way too low.

Murphy: "$1,078 is not a good measure of ability to pay. It's not true that someone with one dollar more than that has the full ability to pay for the full cost of medical care."

The County's cost-of-living formula assumes a person can get housing for $497 a month, and spend less than $581 a month on food, transportation, and health insurance.

Kenny Goldberg, KPBS News.

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