California

Latest Kaiser Health News Stories

Task Force Outlines Strategy To Address California’s Shortfall Of Health Workers

KHN Original

A new report by a coalition of health, education and labor leaders concludes that the state must build a larger and more culturally diverse pool of medical, mental health and home care professionals to meet the needs of a growing population. The findings point to a big challenge for Gov. Gavin Newsom as he seeks to extend health insurance to many of California’s nearly 3 million uninsured residents.

Patients Suffer When Health Care Behemoths Quarrel Over Contracts

KHN Original

The latest example is Sutter Health and Anthem Blue Cross, whose failure to seal a deal is causing Anthem members to worry they may not have access to one of the dominant hospital chains in Northern California. Across the U.S., the stakes in such contract fights have risen, as health systems and insurers battle to increase their market share.

Nonprofit Dental Insurer Under Scrutiny For ‘Flagrant’ Spending

KHN Original

Delta Dental of California, with more than 36 million enrollees across the country, is looking to buy a stake in a for-profit insurance company based in Oregon. Consumer advocates are calling on regulators to scrutinize the transaction, arguing that it is just the latest questionable move by the nonprofit dental insurer whose corporate practices may be out of step with its tax-exempt status.

New Covered California Sign-Ups Plummet

KHN Original

Even though the number of people renewing their Covered California health plans increased this year, new enrollment plunged by nearly a quarter compared with last year, posting a bigger drop than the federal health insurance exchange, healthcare.gov, which saw a 16 percent decrease. Officials largely blame the elimination of the federal tax penalty for people without insurance.

Call The Midwife! (If The Doctor Doesn’t Object)

KHN Original

Hospitals and medical practices are battling outdated stereotypes and sometimes their own doctors to hire certified nurse midwives. Research shows that women cared for by certified nurse midwives have fewer cesarean sections, which can produce significant cost savings for hospitals.

Providers Walk ‘Fine Line’ Between Informing And Scaring Immigrant Patients

KHN Original

Some doctors and clinics are proactively informing patients about a proposed policy that could jeopardize the legal status of immigrants who use public benefit programs such as Medicaid. Others argue that because this “public charge” proposal isn’t final — and may never be adopted — disseminating too much information could create unnecessary alarm and cause some patients to drop benefits.

Podcast: KHN’s ‘What The Health?’ New Year, New Health Proposals

KHN Original

Democratic governors and mayors are unveiling new ideas to control costs and expand coverage. The federal government shutdown has spared most health agencies, but not all. And learn the latest on that lawsuit out of Texas, which is threatening the Affordable Care Act once again. Margot Sanger-Katz of The New York Times, Anna Edney of Bloomberg News and Rebecca Adams of CQ Roll Call join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss these issues and, for “extra credit,” provide their favorite health policy stories of the week. Rovner also interviews KHN’s Jordan Rau about the latest “Bill of the Month.”