News of the Month — January 2019

January 28th, 2019

Californians rank making health care more affordable among their top overall priorities for the state’s governor and legislature, according to a poll released last week by the California Healthcare Foundation. Forty-five percent of respondents cited it as “extremely important,” just behind improving public education (48%) and ahead of affordable housing (40%). Among health issues, Californians’ top priorities are ensuring people with mental health problems can get treatment (49% say it is “extremely important”), making sure all Californians have access to health coverage (45%), and reducing what people pay for their health care (41%). Mental health access ranks in the top two health priorities for Democrats, Republicans, and independents alike. Half of all Californians (52%) say their community does not have enough mental health providers to meet its needs.

Verity Health System has entered into an agreement to sell four hospitals — including Seton Medical Center and Seton Coastside — to Southern California-based KPC Group for $610 million unless other bidders submit better offers, according to the San Jose Mercury News.

Sixty-eight percent of Americans, including 84 percent of Democrats favor Medicare for All, according to a new POLITICO and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health poll.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom made health care a priority in his proposed state budget, asking lawmakers to authorize state-funded financial aid for health insurance, impose a penalty on uninsured Californians and expand Medicaid coverage to unauthorized immigrants.

Nurses and other healthcare workers unveiled an inflatable rocket at two Washington State hospitals last week to raise awareness about executive pay at  Providence St. Joseph Health, according to Becker’s Hospital Review.