New California State Budget Signed Into Law: Full, Continuous Funding for UC Riverside Medical School
Today, Governor Jerry Brown signed the Fiscal Year 2013 – 2014 state budget today providing full and continuous funding for the University of California, Riverside Medical School.
Senator Richard D. Roth (D-Riverside) said, “The $15 million of ongoing state money in this year’s state budget is a victory for the UCR Medical School, the health of the people of Inland Southern California, and our regional economy. This victory will benefit all of us today and our families for generations to come.”
Assemblymember Jose Medina (D-Riverside) said, “Today, we take a major step forward to meet our communities’ critical need for doctors and healthcare providers in an area where our working families have been neglected for too long. The UC Riverside Medical School will also advance the economic competitiveness of the region, bringing much needed jobs within the health related fields.”
UC Riverside Interim Chancellor Jane Close Conoley said, “The establishment of the medical school has been the vision of many on our campus and in our community for many years. The leadership of Assemblymember Jose Medina and Senator Richard D. Roth has been critical to fully funding the UC Riverside School of Medicine. Today is an important milestone for the health of our region and the future of UC Riverside.”
Dr. G. Richard Olds, M.D., Dean of the U.C Riverside School of Medicine said, “The UC Riverside School of Medicine will expand and diversify the region’s physician workforce and develop research and health care delivery programs to improve the health of medically underserved populations.”
Dr. Olds continued, “We would not have reached this point without Assemblymember Medina and Senator Roth’s tireless efforts to champion our new medical school and secure in the Legislature's budget full and continuous funding, which enables us to address one of the most severe shortages of primary care physicians in the nation.”
Today, Riverside and San Bernardino Counties have only 36 and 44 primary care doctors per 100,000 people, respectively. This is far below the federally recommended ratio of 60 to 80 doctors per 100,000 people.
According to the California HealthCare Foundation, Riverside County is currently the only county of more than 1 million people in the State to have fewer than 100 MDs per 100,000 people. The demand for new doctors and healthcare providers will be more acute as California implements the Affordable Care Act and thousands of Inland Southern California residents will become eligible for healthcare coverage, many for the first time.
Funding for the UC Riverside School of Medicine is provided in a budget augmentation of $125 million which was negotiated between the Governor and Legislative leaders. The Legislature’s newly approved state budget is balanced and was completed before the State Constitutional deadline of midnight, June 15.
The signed state budget takes effect on July 1, 2013, when California’s new fiscal year begins.