San Diegans in the temporary labor market in the health field can hold on to a job plan until next year. The Affordable Care Act moratorium that puts a stop to President Obama's national health coverage plan until December 31st in 2014 prohibits the county government from choosing the temporary doctors and staff needed to help locals take up a new health care plan.
A county supervisor board decision on Tuesday September 24th made to fill the temporary agency funding budget with a higher level of money had made the financial move necessary for the county government to team up with the agencies to prepare for an increase in health services set for January 1st in 2014. The red light came on Friday when the Senate approved the government appropriations continuation bill made a strong cost reduction measure by the health care cost deferrals in the Fairness for American Families Act in the bill.
Health professionals in the county will adjust to year with no system just after the President, on Thursday, celebrated the coming of the beginning of coverage sign ups on October 1st, with the statement, "The Affordable Care Act is here." Proclaiming the old health care system is not working during a period the rising cost of health care made it the "biggest driver of our long term deficits." There is still no guarantee on coverage for the tens of millions Obama pleaded are "without the security of health care."
Unfortunately, the U.S. Congress made the tough choice to save the country from a government shutdown local representative Susan Davis had said, after the House passed an earlier version of the resolution bill, did not belong in the government continuation plan. She had asked to guard against a deferral on the Affordable Care Act that "will raise Americans health costs and deny them coverage."
Health care rolls are not expected to grow in San Diego without the hundred dollars to hundreds dollars savings Obama promised and opportunities to join the California health care exchange, Covered California. Exchange sign ups were to open in October.
County temporary hiring plans return full circle, for now. Increases in Medi-Cal and the health exchange services expected to cost the county over 40 million dollars in labor costs during the two fiscal years no longer threaten to change the routine spending. The county had planned on handling 220,000 locals who sign up in the health care exchange. Plus over 100,000 who would become eligible for Medi-Cal under ACA, and the 20,000 already eligible who could enroll.
State and federal funding would have been used to hire medical doctors and psychiatrists, and staff public health clinics and mental health clinics, and the San Diego County Psychiatric Hospital. Without any general fund dollars being spent on the temporary hires.
The county had planned to cover for any turnover in the permanent staff with temporary labor, and cover any extended leave of absence.
Rolls for government health programs and private health care coverage providers will not grow until near the time the moratorium ends next year. San Diego County will have to wait until the exchange starts up.
President Obama's victory on health coverage he counted on to give recovery hiring a large foothold in local health labor markets goes back on the clock.
This is an On The Watch Take.