“The provider shortage also disproportionately impacts, for example, Latino and African-American populations,” said Carmela Castellano-Garcia, President and CEO of the California Primary Care Association (CPCA). “We serve a very diverse population. Over 80 percent are people of color, over half are Latino, and there aren’t enough culturally competent clinicians to address the population.”
“We have truly dodged a bullet,” said Carmela Castellano Garcia, president and CEO of CaliforniaHealth+ Advocates. “We represent the low-income communities of California,” she said. “These are folks that prior to the [Affordable Care Act] were uninsured in huge numbers, so for this segment of the population, the [Affordable Care Act] has been a blessing.” Garcia said supporters of Obamacare “need to continue the fight for access to affordable health care … The fact that we came so close to losing everything shows that we need to do more to push for … health care access for everyone.”
“I am elated that this health care bill has been pulled,” said Carmela Castellano-Garcia, president and CEO of CaliforniaHealth+ Advocates, a nonprofit that represents community health centers. “This was the biggest threat to low-income communities that we have seen, and those of us who have worked for decades to expand access to health care are breathing a huge sigh of relief. We have dodged a bullet.”
“We dodged a bullet today. This is a major victory for community health centers, and the millions of people we serve, who have been fighting to protect the Affordable Care Act since President Trump was elected.” — Carmela Castellano-Garcia, president and CEO of CaliforniaHealth+ Advocates in Sacramento
The patients at community clinics aren’t the only ones at risk, advocates say. With the closures of clinics come lost jobs and shaken economies, according to Carmela Castellano-Garcia, president of the California Primary Care Association and California HealthPlus Advocates. “This funding will help prevent community health center closures,” Castellano-Garcia said. “It can take up to a year to hire a doctor for a community health center.