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Health Care Reform Heating Up

Audio

Aired 4/19/09

Senate President Pro Tem Don Perata’s health care plan to reduce the number of uninsured in California is getting mixed reactions. Business groups are giving the proposal a thumbs down, but Governor Schwarzenegger is offering some words of encouragement. KPBS Reporter Kenny Goldberg has more.

Under the proposal, all employers would have to provide health insurance or pay into a state fund. Workers who aren’t covered through their job would face a payroll deduction. A new state agency would offer three types of health plans through arrangements with insurance companies.

Business groups don’t like the idea. But Kim Belshe, Secretary of California’s Health and Human Services Agency, says the governor salutes the effort.          

Belshe: Well, I think broadly stated, we’re very encouraged by Senator Perata coming forward and bringing his best ideas and thoughts to the table.”  

Belshe won’t comment on any specific parts of the proposal. She says the governor will unveil his own healthcare reform plan in early January. Kenny Goldberg, KPBS News.

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