Latest Kaiser Health News Stories
People with diabetes say they’ve been waiting for years for better technology to manage their chronic condition. Tired of waiting, some tech-savvy, do-it-yourselfers are constructing their own devices using open-source programming instructions.
California’s stem cell agency, created by a $3 billion bond measure 15 years ago, is almost out of money. Its supporters plan to ask voters for even more funding next year, even though no agency-funded treatments have been approved for widespread use.
Presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren tried to tell the story of Ady Barkan in the latest Democratic debate. He’s one of the most prominent advocates for “Medicare for All” and is spending his remaining time alive doing everything he can to make the case that all Americans need affordable health coverage.
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.
The proportion of money that California hospitals spent on free and discounted care for low-income people dropped by more than half from 2013 to 2017 — even for nonprofit hospitals. Hospitals say there’s less demand for charity care because more people now have health insurance, but consumer advocates counter that people still need help.
Veronica Kelley, head of San Bernardino County’s Department of Behavioral Health, knows firsthand that the mental health effects from mass shootings linger. Nearly four years after her community was devastated by a massacre of 14 people, Kelley has advice for Gilroy, El Paso, Dayton and other communities reeling from recent carnage.
Amid forecasts for increasingly unhealthy air due to wildfire smoke, residents in Western states are snatching up home air purifiers. With good reason.
Studies long have linked urban firefighters’ on-the-job exposure to toxins with an increased risk of cancer. More recently, as urban-style development reaches into once remote stretches of California’s mountains and forests, wildfire crews are exposed to fuels and carcinogens more typical of urban fires. We talk with Tony Stefani of the San Francisco Firefighters Cancer Prevention Foundation about the health risks that poses for firefighters.
Kelley Watson Snyder, a mother who for years opposed mandatory childhood vaccinations and joined with like-minded parents who espoused similar views, today runs a pro-vaccination Facebook page. What changed?
As California Attorney General Xavier Becerra cracks down on pharmaceutical companies he said paid competitors to delay generic versions of their drugs, he’s also pushing for legislation that would give his department tools to catch more of them. It’s the first of its kind in the nation.
Health officials and AIDS advocates in San Francisco have endorsed a new regimen for PrEP medication: to be taken only immediately before and after sex, thus reducing cost and potential side effects. The standard regimen is one pill a day for an open-ended period.
Children are far less likely to drown than they were in the 1980s, in California and across the nation. Experts say state and local laws that require more fencing and security features around family swimming pools have made a difference and should be expanded nationwide.
Dr. Mark Rubinstein, known for his research into youth vaping, has left UCSF to become executive medical officer at Juul Labs, the nation’s leading producer of e-cigarettes. Juul says the hire will help them reduce teen vaping. Critics see Big Tobacco tactics.
Pressure is growing on employers to better address the mental health needs of workers. Some big companies have begun to offer options such as peer support groups, and California has adopted a new law that calls on employers to act.
Over the past decade, more than 350 workers nationwide have died from heat-related illness, and tens of thousands have had heat-related problems serious enough that they missed at least one day of work. Proposed federal legislation, modeled on California regulations, would create the first national standards for protecting workers from heat-related stress.
Most patients don’t argue when their health insurance won’t cover treatment or medication, but they should: Consumers win about half of their appeals. The process can sometimes be overwhelming, but there are ways to prepare and get help.
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.
Premiums will grow by an average of 0.8% next year on the state health insurance exchange. Officials cite two new policies for the relatively low rate hike: a new state tax penalty on Californians who don’t have health insurance coupled with state-based tax credits to help enrollees afford their premiums, including middle-income people who make too much money to qualify for federal financial aid.
Enrollment among undocumented immigrant children in California’s Medicaid program started strong before stagnating and then falling. Although this decline is similar to an enrollment decline among all children in Medicaid nationwide, experts believe there are different reasons behind it.
The Medical Board of California is investigating at least four doctors for issuing questionable vaccine exemptions for numerous children. The investigations come amid the nation’s worst measles outbreak in more than a quarter-century.