This Week – January 12, 2019

This Week in Washington, D.C. SHUTDOWN

  • State and Local News

Government shutdown still in place:
State and Local News

Though the new year welcomed a new Congress, as of Friday, January 11th, the federal government remains partially shut down for the 21st day. While President Trump and Congress remain at an impasse in funding of the federal government, there are various health care policy issues important to ACG members emerging at the state and local level.

Below, please find a summary of some of the latest news happening across the nation:

On Monday, newly sworn-in Governor of California, Gavin Newsom announced the plans for his first state budget proposal.  Newsom’s proposal included a Medi-Cal expansion to include undocumented immigrants ages 19 to 26.  This legislation would mark California as “the first state in the nation to cover young undocumented adults through a state Medicaid program.” 

Governor Newsom also stated his intention to expand ACA subsidies using revenue from a new individual mandate.


On Tuesday, Mayor of New York City, Bill de Blasio announced his plans to set in motion a direct comprehensive healthcare plan to cover all residents of the city, regardless of immigration status.

He stated, “Health care is a right, not a privilege reserved for those who can afford it….While the federal government works to gut health care for millions of Americans, New York City is leading the way by guaranteeing that every New Yorker has access to quality, comprehensive access to care, regardless of immigration status or their ability to pay.”

His plan, “NYC Care,” is expected to launch in the Bronx as early as this summer, and will expand across the remaining boroughs over the next few years.  It is estimated to cost the city around $100 million each year, and will grant the currently 600,000 uninsured New Yorkers access to a guaranteed healthcare plan.


Next week in New Mexico, a bill is projected to be introduced by Democratic State Senator, Jerry Ortiz y Pino, that would serve at the US’s first Medicaid buy-in program. This plan aims to provide all residents of the state (regardless of immigration status) who do not qualify for Medicaid or the ACA the option to buy into the Medicaid program. The program is estimated to cost approximately $70 million each year, and would allow New Mexico the autonomy from requiring any waivers granted federally, as it would utilize state funds only.


On Tuesday, Governor of Washington, Jay Inslee put forth a proposal to develop legislation ultimately aimed at implementing universal healthcare for the state. He expressed the state’s need for competition in order to decrease overall costs and expand coverage. The legislation, which will be introduced by Democratic State Representative Eileen Cody, would provide a new “public option” plan under Washington’s current healthcare market, and require the creation of standardized plans in the exchange.


On Tuesday, newly elected Democratic Governor of Wisconsin, Tony Evers issued a pair of executive orders, promising a plan to make certain that “more Wisconsinites have access to affordable, quality health care, while saving Wisconsin taxpayer dollars, by expanding Medicaid eligibility.”  He also ensured to pay special focus on protecting those individuals with any pre-existing conditions.

Governor Evers stated that the plan intends to “enhance health plan affordability, access and consumer protection; and protect against attempts to undermine the Affordable Care Act marketplace with short-term plans that do not comply with Affordable Care Act requirements.”


How can I get involved?

What are some important bills impacting GI in Congress? In your state? How can you easily voice your support?

ACG’s Legislative Action Center is your one stop resource to review and advocate for various federal and state bills impacting your profession, practice, and patients.

Take action now!

Remember to contact your ACG Governor on important state and local issues impacting you and your practice.

The ACG Board of Governors is one of the most unique aspects of the American College of Gastroenterology. Governors are ACG Fellows that are elected from the membership of a particular state or region. There are currently 77 Governors across seven different regions in the U.S. and abroad. The Board of Governors acts as a two-way conduit between College leadership and the membership at-large. This helps the College make certain it is meeting the evolving needs of the membership.

Contact your Governor today!