Month: June 2012

Court upholds health law but limits power of Congress

By Daniel Weintraub

Today’s Supreme Court decision on President Obama’s health care law will help millions of Californians gain access to health insurance, and the decision could jump start Obama’s reelection campaign. But in an odd twist, even while upholding the law, Chief Justice John Roberts also gave a major legal victory to conservatives, ruling that Congress does not have the power under the Constitution’s Commerce Clause to require people to buy insurance.

Brave New Medicine

By Suzanne Potter

Claudia Lopez tries to comfort her 9-month-old son Brian as the doctor examines the baby to figure out why he’d been vomiting all night. She explains, in Spanish, why she relies on this low-cost clinic: “I need this place because I make so little at work and I don’t have insurance.” Lopez is 26 years old – a single mother of three – who had to quit school at 14 years old when her parents brought her to the U.S. from Mexico and sent her to work in the fields. Lopez is a typical patient at Clinicas de Salud del Pueblo, a network of low-cost clinics in Riverside and Imperial Counties; their name translates as “Community Health Clinic.”

Preparations for reform may leave lasting changes

By Mary Flynn

The Affordable Care Act allows for about 32 million newly insured Americans by 2019, and three to four million eligible by 2014. Federal health care reform might not survive after a Supreme Court decision expected this week, but the preparations for an influx of new patients may have already changed the health care system.

Foster the Children

By Robert Fulton

When doctors diagnosed Carla Vance with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma two years ago, the then 16-year-old had been in the Los Angeles County foster care system for seven years. Medi-Cal will help with her coverage until she is 21. But what happens after that? The answer to that question depends in part on the Supreme Court’s ruling on health care reform.

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