- Furkan Yalcin
SACRAMENTO - Assemblywoman Pilar Schiavo announced today the passage of Assembly Joint Resolution 4 (AJR 4) off the Senate Floor. AJR 4, The Medicare Protection Act of 2023, calls on the Legislature to request President Biden, a champion of Medicare, terminate the Accountable Care Organization REACH (ACO REACH) pilot program. This program directly undermines the direct principles of traditional Medicare by incentivizing profits and limiting delivery of health care.
With more than sixty co-authors, AJR4 has received bipartisan support in both houses.
“Unaware seniors who depend on traditional Medicare for their healthcare needs may be re-assigned into these ACO REACH programs, directly threatening their free choice of primary care providers,” said Assemblywoman Pilar Schiavo.
“These programs also have a well-documented history of overcharging in the billions of national taxpayer dollars by Wall Street investors and corporate profiteers threatening the financial security of Medicare and healthcare our seniors rely on. ACO REACH is the re-branding of the Medicare Advantage Program. California houses 20 percent of the nationally approved ACO REACH programs, posing a significant risk to seniors and vulnerable populations who rely on Medicare in our state.
AJR 4 was supported by the California Alliance for Retired Americans (CARA) and sends a strong message that California, home of the nation’s largest Medicare Population (6.3 Million and growing), will no longer tolerate a national program that could have detrimental effects to our health care system, further destabilize Medicare’s funding, and threaten the health and wellbeing of our seniors and people with disabilities. California is the first to pass a resolution requesting the termination of the ACO REACH pilot program, following 2-years of protests and campaigning from grassroots activists and Congressional leaders across the nation.
"Today the California Legislature stands in support of seniors in California and nationwide to stop the ACO REACH program that is financially draining the Medicare Trust Fund by lining the pockets of the private insurance industry and Wall Street investors,” said Cindy Young, Vice President of CARA. “We can and must protect the traditional Medicare program so that seniors can continue to see physicians of their choice in their community instead of being forced into narrow networks with limited access to local providers. CARA thanks the California's Legislature, and in particular, Assemblywoman Schiavo for calling on the Biden Administration to cease the ACO-REACH."
Assemblywoman Pilar Schiavo was elected to the California State Assembly in November of 2022 to represent the 40th Assembly District, representing the Northwest San Fernando Valley and the Santa Clarita Valley. Upon her election, she was appointed as Assistant Majority Whip by the Speaker of the Assembly and now serves as Chair of the Assembly Committee on Military and Veterans Affairs. Prior to her election, Assemblywoman Schiavo was a Nurse Advocate and Small Business Owner who worked in the labor movement for more than 20 years. Throughout her career, Assemblywoman Schiavo helped deliver healthcare, including reproductive healthcare, to more than one million people. In the Northwest San Fernando Valley, she co-founded an organization that helped secure housing for Veterans experiencing homelessness, has delivered more than 50,000 meals to people in need, and increased resources to help keep our communities safe. Assemblywoman Schiavo lives in Chatsworth with her daughter Sofia where they love to hike in the Santa Susana Mountains.