NUHW member addresses San Diego labor panel

NewsApril 27, 2021

Melissa Hawthorne-Campos, a mental health therapist at Kaiser San Diego, participated in a panel discussion during the Progressive Labor Alliance Summit, which was organized by the San Diego labor and progressive leaders.

“The Future of Healthcare,” panel delved into the experiences caregivers faced during the pandemic as they struggled with inadequate staffing and supply chains caused by the structural failures of our nation’s healthcare system.

“This pandemic has shown the ugly side of a healthcare system that is already broken,” Hawthorne-Campos said during the discussion. “We need to adequately invest in and care for our mental and physical health care workers.”

Hawthorne-Campos discussed her colleagues’ fight to be able to safely work from home and how telehealth is changing the delivery of mental health care. 

She also outlined NUHW’s work last year to pass SB 855, which will prevent insurers from denying care based on “medical need” and our sponsorship this year of SB 221, which would require insurers and HMOs to provide return therapy appointments within 10 businesss days.

“Our work is built on the understanding that the mental health care field requires more therapists that are culturally competent especially as we face the psychological impacts and repercussions of the pandemic,” Hawthorne-Campos said during the discussion. “That’s why NUHW is working hard to increase standards in our workplaces and also throughout the entire system.”