May Revise Delivers on Some Master Plan Aging Priorities, But Greater Budget Commitment is Needed
SAN DIEGO, CA – May 18, 2022 – West Health Chief Executive Officer and Chair, Shelley Lyford, issued the following statement on the May revision of the 2022-2023 budget and its implications for aging in California.
“Through a bold Master Plan for Aging, California has developed a 10-year blueprint to restructure and redefine how our state cares for and supports older adults, their families, and caregivers. While Governor Newsom’s 2022-23 budget and its revision provides funding for some key Master Plan for Aging initiatives, it falls short of delivering on the plan’s promise.
Certainly, there are elements of the budget that deserve recognition—namely the $100 million put forth to develop and manufacture generic insulin right here in California. This critical and long-needed funding will help achieve an important goal of the Master Plan for Aging: making essential medicines more affordable and accessible. After decades of pharmaceutical industry price gouging and a U.S. Congress that has failed to act, this funding could not be more timely or crucial.
However, when compared against a $97 billion surplus, the May revise missed a significant opportunity for more robust and targeted investments for older Californians. No single budget can solve all problems, but we strongly believe that funding must match the Master Plan’s vision and goals year after year. The final budget passed by the legislature must take the entire plan into account. Our older adults deserve no less.”