While the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on our oldest Californians is well known, the pandemic also has caused widespread emotional suffering among California’s children and youth.
Out of this crisis, Gov. Gavin Newsom has demonstrated visionary leadership in making a historic $4.4 billion investment to transform the state’s behavioral health system for youth.
Since the pandemic began, California organizations that serve domestic violence survivors report getting more requests for help than ever before and hearing more stories of extreme abuse.
Rather than diminish, this trend has persisted as society reopens and survivors feel better able to seek help because they’re no longer trapped at home or worried about getting the virus, advocates said.
During my nearly 15 years as an adolescent psychiatrist, I have worked with hundreds of young people and their families. But, until last year, I had not seen hopelessness so prevalent in young people.
The pandemic affected teens and young adults in fundamental ways not necessarily associated with the coronavirus or the social isolation often blamed for spiraling youth mental health.
As federal and state policy makers make plans for infrastructure and budgetary spending, let’s not forget to invest in the infrastructure of care too, particularly for children with disabilities.
The framework of support that makes it possible for families to care for children with complex care needs safely, in their own homes and in their local school systems, is part of our infrastructure of care.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom and the state Legislature, with the best of intentions, enacted AB 290 to protect dialysis patients from predatory insurance practices that seem harmful to patients. But the state disproportionately favored the more powerful voice of the insurance industry, which claims that dialysis providers use charities to “steer” low-income dialysis patients into the private insurance market so they can be reimbursed at a higher rate.
While the benefits of vaccination far outweigh the minimal risks, and data collected from pregnant women who have taken the COVID-19 vaccine so far has been overwhelmingly positive, vaccine hesitancy among expectant African Americans remains.
Misinformation has led to a fear of how the COVID-19 vaccine adversely affects maternal health and fetal development.
Years of xenophobic rhetoric and anti-immigrant policies have fostered deeply entrenched fears and widespread misinformation that keep immigrants from accessing critical resources.
We need a proactive, collaborative approach to begin healing the harm caused by the Trump administration’s public charge rule. From community organizations to state agencies, we must provide clear guidance to families and tackle fear with facts.
Local governments invest a huge percentage of their budgets in policing, often to the detriment of other community services. Yet the results of this enormous taxpayer outlay are mediocre at best.
That’s why advocates across the country are calling on governments to reduce police budgets and reallocate those funds to services that tackle the underlying social and economic factors generating crime and perpetuating structural racism. These include programs such as job training, mental health services, homelessness prevention and basic income supports.
Throughout the pandemic, medically fragile children in California’s pediatric long-term care facilities and their parents have endured drastic limits on their ability to see and interact with each other. Some locations barred parents and other caregivers from visiting their children in person for over a year, citing virus safety precautions.
Advocates and parents said they’re concerned that visitation policies at pediatric subacute units during the pandemic may have caused long-term harm to kids.
The California Black Women’s Health Project and other health and racial justice organizations are grateful to the California Legislature for supporting our bold proposal to fund community programs seeking to address systemic racism embedded in health care systems.
The California Health Equity and Racial Justice Fund would dedicate $100 million annually, a fraction of the state’s historic surplus, to innovative approaches to transform systems, eliminate disparities and improve health.
To transform the future of health care, we must understand current care. This is especially true when it comes to addressing the multiple socioeconomic and other factors that drive health disparities.
Right now, our ability to reduce these inequities and increase quality of care for those most in need is limited because we do not have accurate and complete information about how our most vulnerable patients access health care.