At a yearly cost of $188.2 million, kids under the age of 19 who are in the United States illegally, will now have access to publicly funded Heath Care in California. As of this week, these children can now sign up for the state’s health care program without regard to their immigration status.

State officials expect approximately 200,0000 children to join Medi-Cal in the first year and those numbers will rise after that.

As health care and immigration advocates are celebrating this week, there is a new push for their next goal, expanding Medi-Cal to cover undocumented adults in California.

Here is what the author of the legislation authorizing the expanded coverage to children and now to adults had to say, “While Congress remains gridlocked with stereotypes and hateful rhetoric, California remains as a hopeful beacon that tells people, ‘Immigrants, you matter. Immigrants, you contribute to our economy. Immigrants, you are people that deserve to have health care,'” Sen. Ricardo Lara, D-Bell Gardens.

Health Care to Undocumented Children, Adults Are Next