Verification of illegal immigrants is scrutinized amid healthcare debate
Los Angeles Times, October 6, 2009
Los Angeles County officials are questioning the cost-effectiveness of rules aimed at screening those trying to get public health services. Since July 2008, when Los Angeles County began implementing tougher federal verification rules, health workers have gone back to check the documents of more than 100,000 recipients of Medi-Cal, the public healthcare program for low-income residents.
The county has received nearly $28 million in state and federal funds to cover the cost of the program and posted 81 people in 27 social service department offices to check documents, officials said. So far, they have not found one illegal immigrant who posed as a legal resident to get benefits, according to Deborah Walker, the county's Medi-Cal program director.