Opinion

Opinion: Federal Case Threatens California Dialysis Patients’ Access to Health Insurance

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.

Analysis: Care for Children with Disabilities Is Infrastructure, Too. Let’s Invest in it.

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.

Opinion: We Need Clear, Fact-Based Guidance to Recover from Trump’s Public Charge Rule

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.

Analysis: The Case for Defunding the Police

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.

Opinion: California Has Opportunity to Close Racial Health Gap

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.

Opinion: Accurate Patient Data is Key to Reducing Health Disparities, Improving Care

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.

A man crosses Market Street in San Francisco last April during the pandemic. Photo by Philip Wyers / iStock

Opinion: An Equitable COVID-19 Recovery Requires Renewed Public Health Investment

As a second-generation public health nurse, I can assure you another crisis will inevitably come. It could be a wildfire, poor air quality, extreme heat, another disease outbreak, an earthquake or bioterrorism. No one knows, which makes investment in our readiness so important.

Only one thing is certain: The next emergency will reveal our progress, and our failures, in addressing social inequities.

Opinion: The Importance of Fitness in a Post-Pandemic World

The past year has taken a toll on the physical and mental health of millions of Californians. While we were rightly focused on slowing the spread of the pandemic, widespread shutdowns brought about a more sedentary lifestyle, which has led to weight gain and worsened mental health for many.

As Californians look ahead and as more people receive the vaccine, it is time for policymakers and citizens to start reprioritizing physical activity and placing much needed attention on the health equity crisis in our state.

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