Opinion: As Doctors, We Prescribe Voting For Better Health

We are physicians and leaders of the largest federally qualified community health center in the nation, located in East Los Angeles. The communities we serve are disproportionately experiencing the worst health outcomes of the COVID-19 pandemic.

These deaths are unacceptable. We believe it is our duty as health care leaders to educate and inform our patients on the importance of registering to vote, more so in this election than ever.

Bill Would Reverse ‘Discriminatory’ Policy That Mostly Impacts Women of Color

California is close to revising a rule that excludes family caregivers from unemployment.

If signed into law, the bill is expected to extend unemployment eligibility to more than 119,000 family caregivers, who are primarily low-income women of color, according to a home care workers union. Supporters say that’s only fair, given that people employed as in-home caregivers who are not family members do receive unemployment benefits.

Disasters Are Driving a Mental Health Crisis

From climate-fueled wildfires to COVID-19, mounting catastrophes are sowing stress and trauma. The country’s one program to help reaches only a fraction of survivors.

California counties are required by state law to provide mental health services in the wake of a wildfire or other emergency event, but only to the extent their resources allow. Many poorer, rural counties – which are often those most impacted by wildfires – just don’t have the money or resources.

Opinion: Our Research Shows How to Right the Injustices of COVID-19

We examined health data from New York City and Los Angeles and found troubling patterns. In both cities, Latinx and Black residents were twice as likely to die from COVID-19 than white residents, and residents in high-poverty areas had the highest infections and death rates.

Economic recovery will not be possible without an infusion of support to help right the injustices that already vulnerable populations are grappling with under the devastation caused by COVID-19.

How to Heal Emotional Wounds After Disaster

Disasters are stressful. Our warming world keeps adding fuel to the fires — and floods and hurricanes, among other calamities. What can be done about the trauma that follows?

The Center for Public Integrity, Columbia Journalism Investigations and our partners in newsrooms around the country, including the California Health Report, have been reporting on this for months.

We heard from more than 200 disaster survivors and people helping them. Here’s what we learned.

Community Gatherings Offer Healing for Emotional Wounds After Disasters

Disasters are stressful, and these events are worsening as the climate warms. But therapy isn’t an option for everyone. ‘Convivencias’ are an alternative in a fire-prone region.

Convivencia means “coexistence” — or colloquially, “gathering.” Formally speaking, they are therapeutic support groups. Except they aren’t marketed that way.

Painful Questions: What Happens When Doctors Uncover Adverse Childhood Experiences?

As California launches widespread screening for adverse childhood experiences, critics question the science, and the consequences.

While few doubt that severe stress in childhood can lead to ailments later in life, tools used during doctors’ appointments are described in prominent scientific journals as inappropriate and unethical, oversimplifying human experience and straining doctor-patient trust.

Pandemic Pushes Parents Of Kids With Special Needs To Breaking Point

Thousands of parents across California are caring for children with physical, behavioral and developmental conditions. They typically rely on a small army of teachers, therapists, nurses and other caregivers to get through the week. But that has been stripped away due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Parents are feeling isolated, stressed and overwhelmed at a time when families need more support than ever to deal with a loss of routine, heightened anxiety and other challenges.

Opinion: Methane Leaks in the Central Valley May Be Worsening COVID-19 Cases

COVID-19 is now on track to become one of the top 10 causes of death in the United States in 2020. And people with underlying conditions like respiratory diseases are at increased risk for severe illness and death.

This is bad news by any standard, but terrible news if you happen to live in an area such as California’s San Joaquin Valley where the pre-COVID death rate due to chronic lower respiratory disease is 12 times higher than that of the rest of the state.

Amid Pandemic, Young Kids With Special Needs Missing Out On Services

As COVID-19 disrupts the transition from early intervention to school, children are going without occupational, physical and speech therapies and other services they’re entitled to.

The danger, advocates for children with special needs said, is that these kids are missing out on interventions at a critical moment in their lives. Since mid-March, California’s complex special needs care system has struggled to move children from one program to another, parents and advocates said.

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