Latest Kaiser Health News Stories
Dr. Gabor Maté of British Columbia recently visited Sacramento and laid out his theories in an interview with California Healthline.
Just hours into his tenure as California’s new governor, Democrat Gavin Newsom proposed major plans to insure more Californians, including state-funded financial aid for health insurance and a requirement for Californians to have coverage.
On New Year’s Day, California joined the majority of U.S. states that require people convicted of drunken driving to install ignition-linked breathalyzers in their vehicles. If the devices detect alcohol above a predetermined level, the cars don’t start.
California’s incoming congressional delegation will be the largest in the U.S. House of Representatives to support progressive health care policies such as “Medicare-for-all.” But the political reality of a Republican Senate and president means that they will need to pursue ideas that “aren’t pie in the sky.”
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.
The potentially improper payments occurred in 2014 and 2015, when the state says it was under pressure from a massive influx of new applicants due to the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion.
The whistleblower complaint says that Sutter, one of the largest health systems in the U.S., exaggerated how sick certain Medicare patients were in order to collect higher payments from the government-funded program.
The state medical board grants probation in more than a third of cases, a KHN analysis found. Even as other institutions adapt to lessons of the #MeToo movement, the board plans no significant changes, saying it has always prioritized discipline for sexual misconduct.
To keep costs down, Blue Shield of California next year will scale back on a program allowing members to receive a wide range of care beyond the state’s borders. Customers with individual plans mostly won’t be able to get coverage out of state except for emergencies or other exceptional circumstances.
Patient advocates say the state’s new staffing regulations are a good start toward better protecting the frail, but the nursing home industry contends they’re too burdensome.
More than half of mass shooters have serious mental health disorders, experts say, but the vast majority of mentally ill people are not violent. Some clinicians suggest strategic interventions, including closing loopholes in background checks to buy firearms and allowing family members to confiscate guns under temporary court orders for relatives at risk of doing harm.
As wildfires blaze in Northern and Southern California, millions of people outside of the burn zones are getting exposed to dangerous wildfire smoke. For those donning face masks for protection, only a specific mask will work.
The dialysis industry raised nearly $111 million in a successful bid to defeat the measure, which also was opposed by hospitals and doctors. The union that sponsored the measure collected about one-sixth that amount.
Attorney General Xavier Becerra views his resounding Election Day win as a “clear signal” from voters to continue his work defending the Affordable Care Act and pushing back against the Trump administration.
Even though Democrat Gavin Newsom campaigned for single-payer, it’s unlikely that he and other lawmakers will completely overhaul the state’s health care system right away. Instead, they will likely propose incremental steps to provide more Californians with health insurance.
As politicians across the country toss about such health care catchphrases, sometimes interchangeably, many voters say they’re “just confused.”
The money was paid on behalf of more than 400,000 people who may have been ineligible for the public program, a state audit found. One had been dead for four years before payments stopped.
Although dialysis provider DaVita Inc. has taken major financial hits this year, including a $383.5 million jury award in response to wrongful death lawsuits, it still rakes in profits. The company faces its biggest threat next month, when California voters weigh in on a ballot initiative that could force it to leave the state.
Union-backed initiatives in Palo Alto and Livermore, Calif., aim to cap charges by hospitals and doctors, seeking to build on national furor over rising medical bills. The measures arise in health care markets that are among the most expensive in the nation.
Dialysis companies have contributed more than $110 million to defeat an initiative on California’s Nov. 6 ballot that would limit their profits — breaking the $109 million record set by the pharmaceutical industry in 2016.