Latest Kaiser Health News Stories
Public health officials are asking for more money in California’s state budget. But unlike some rich and powerful health care interests, they don’t have an army of lobbyists to curry favor with lawmakers.
California legislators resume their work Monday after more than a month off. While the coronavirus pandemic has shifted the state’s priorities, many lawmakers say they still intend to push non-COVID health care bills to tax soda, ban vape flavors and more.
Gov. Gavin Newsom has asked lawmakers to pare down their legislative wish lists and focus on the state’s coronavirus response. But state Sen. Jim Beall plans to forge ahead with his mental health care proposals, including a measure to create a state mental health parity requirement.
In an interview with California Healthline, the state’s Senate leader, Toni Atkins, makes clear that with social-distancing measures in force it will be difficult to debate and pass complicated budget measures ― but public health, education and public safety will be priorities.
California lawmakers are proposing ambitious health care ideas, from creating a state generic drug label to banning the sale of flavored e-cigarette products. Even though Democrats control state government, they’re likely to face pushback from powerful health care industry groups like hospitals.
Kate Gordon, director of Gov. Gavin Newsom’s Office of Planning and Research, is tasked with identifying and mitigating the risks of climate change in California. She spoke to KHN about how that work intersects with health, and how residents can get involved.
A California law, which took effect in July 2017, protects consumers who use an in-network hospital or other facility from surprise bills when cared for by an out-of-network doctor. But physicians say the law has allowed insurers to shrink networks, limiting access to those doctors who have contracted with the patients’ insurance plans.
A new state law that takes effect Jan. 1 requires employers to provide spaces where women can pump their breast milk comfortably and privately, with access to electricity, running water and refrigeration.
The state Senate on Wednesday sent a measure to Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom that would tighten the rules for children’s medical exemptions from vaccines. Newsom, who said in June that he would sign the measure after amendments had been made at his request, now wants more changes.
Dialysis companies are fighting a bill in the California legislature that could disrupt their business model. Their weapons: campaign cash and a sophisticated public relations campaign.
States increasingly expect to see insurers enter or re-enter ACA marketplaces next year. That’s a critical sign that these exchanges are growing less risky for insurers despite ongoing political and legal battles over the ACA.
California lawmakers on Wednesday pulled legislation that would have protected some patients from surprise medical bills for emergency care, citing opposition from hospitals. They vowed to resurrect the bill next year.
Hundreds of protesters descended on the state Capitol on Thursday, warning against government tyranny and corporate greed. Their target: not taxes, not high-tech surveillance, but a bill that would determine which kids must get their routine shots.
In the wake of concerns from Gov. Gavin Newsom and the Medical Board of California, a state senator on Tuesday unveiled significant amendments to his bill to tighten vaccine requirements. A hearing on the measure is likely to draw hundreds of people to the state Capitol on Thursday.
California lawmakers are debating whether to tighten the rules on childhood vaccinations and give the ultimate say to state public health officials. But questions are emerging from unexpected quarters: the state medical board and Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom.
Millions of Californians are vulnerable to hefty surprise medical bills from their trips to the emergency room. Now, state lawmakers are considering a measure to cap how much out-of-network hospitals can charge privately insured patients for emergency care, which could serve as a model for other states.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s proposal to provide health coverage to unauthorized immigrants ages 19 to 25 would siphon money that four counties currently use for public health efforts such as battling contagious diseases.
The pesticide chlorpyrifos has been linked to developmental problems in children. Some state and federal lawmakers want the chemical banned, but federal regulators are fighting to keep it on the market.
The soda industry spent $11.8 million to influence policy statewide in 2017 and 2018. As politicians once again consider bills that would tax and label sugary drinks, more big money is expected to flow.
The leaders of California’s legislative health committees who wield power over state health policy have been showered with money from the health care sector, with drug companies, health plans, hospitals and doctors providing nearly 40 percent of their 2017-18 campaign funds.