As of 2017, California’s uninsured rate stands at just over 7 percent. Moving towards universal health coverage in California for the 3.72 million projected to be uninsured in 2020, of which about 1.5 million are undocumented, is a significant challenge but has considerable benefits. Universal coverage will allow all Californians to have improved access to care so they can prevent and treat illnesses that can be passed on to others. While most Californians support universal coverage, there remain reservations about the cost of doing so.
Richard M. Scheffler is a Professor of the Graduate School at the School of Public Health and the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley. He is also the Director of the Petris Center for Healthcare Markets and Consumer Welfare endowed by the Office of the Attorney General for the State of California in 1999.