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Blog Posts from May 2015

Blog Posts from May 2015

This was originally published by The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation and the Blue Shield of California Foundation. This upcoming event will feature a number of great speakers, including CPEHN's Executive Director, Sarah de Guia!

Continuing an effort to explore Affordable Care Act (ACA) implementation in the states, the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Blue Shield of California Foundation are examining ACA implementation in California at a briefing and panel discussion in Sacramento on May 28th. A state official, experts, and advocates will discuss issues and challenges related to the implementation of the law and the practical impact of providing coverage to roughly 4.5 million Californians who have coverage via the state marketplace or the Medi-Cal expansion. 

The event will feature the release of the report Coverage Expansions and the Remaining Uninsured: A Look at California During Year One of ACA Implementation, based on the latest round of The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation’s Survey of Low-Income Americans and the ACA. The report, funded by the Blue Shield of California Foundation, provides a California snapshot of who gained coverage or remained uninsured in 2014. It also provides information on how the newly insured view their coverage and any problems they have encountered in using their coverage; how the remaining uninsured and newly insured fare with respect to access to medical care and financial burden; and why people in California continue to lack coverage. 

This originally appeared on the California Budget & Policy Center's site. It is important to remember these health programs as we await the release of Governor Jerry Brown's revised budget proposal tomorrow.

Ensuring the health and wellbeing of children is fundamental to supporting families and strengthening communities across California. Public investment and related public policies can play a central role in keeping children and their families healthy. This is especially important for children living in poverty, who are more likely than other children to face short- and long-term health challenges.

Children’s Health Programs in California: Promoting a Lifetime of Health and Well-Being looks at our state’s health care system for children and their families, including both public health care coverage and public health programs. This report shows the size and scope of these programs, who they benefit, and the services they provide. In addition, this report highlights some of the key opportunities and challenges California now faces in promoting children’s health in the wake of the Great Recession and with the implementation of federal health care reform.

Children’s Health Programs in California: Recent Years’ Budget and Policy Changes – a brief companion piece to the main publication – provides a timeline of major policy choices made in the past several years that have shaped our state’s health system for children.

Over 3.5 million Californians have enrolled in new coverage options since the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, yet communities of color, immigrants, and Limited English Proficient populations continue to face health inequities. Join the California Pan-Ethnic Health Network, California Partnership, and the Community Clinic Association of San Bernardino County, for Focus on Equity: Communities of Color in a Post-ACA California on June 5th in San Bernardino.

We’re also excited about the opportunity to examine the unique needs of the Inland Empire. With communities of color representing nearly two-thirds of the population in the region (66.7% of San Bernardino County, 60.3% of Riverside County), we will focus on ways to improve health and reduce inequities in this majority population. We will highlight opportunities to advance health equity both in the Inland Empire and across the state through discussion of the following topics:

  • Health for All efforts to provide health coverage to immigrants
  • Integration of behavioral health and primary care
  • Equity and health care quality

Register today and you’ll have the opportunity to:

The consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages is creating a health crisis in California. Tomorrow, the Assembly Health Committee will be voting on an important bill that will begin to address this crisis.

AB 1357 (Bloom) – The Children and Family Health Promotion Program – will create a dedicated revenue source to fund community clinics, school based health centers, and preventive programs to address the health impacts of sugar sweetened beverages. An estimated $3 billion dollars will be raised annually through a small 2 cent per ounce fee on sugar-sweetened beverages. These funds would help improve the health of our communities by preventing diabetes and other devastating health impacts in California’s most vulnerable communities.
 
If you live in the following areas, please call your Assemblymember TODAY and ask them to support AB 1357!

Autumn Burke – Inglewood – (916) 319-2062
Jimmy Gomez – Los Angeles (Northeast) – (916) 319-2051
Lorena Gonzalez – San Diego (Chula Vista) – (916) 319-2080
Roger Hernandez – West Covina – (916) 319-2048
Sebastian Ridley-Thomas – Culver City – (916) 319-2054
Freddie Rodriguez – Chino/Pomona – (916) 319-2052
​Miguel Santiago – Los Angeles (Downtown) – (916) 319-2051

This article appeared on the Latino Coalition for a Healthy California's blog.

On May 12th, the California Assembly Health Committee will hear a new bill seeking to address one of the major health crises of our time. AB 1357 (Bloom) – The Children and Family Health Promotion Program – will create a dedicated revenue source enabling California to start to address the diabetes epidemic that is impacting our communities with devastating consequences. Comprehensive prevention efforts to reduce the diabetes epidemic in California will be supported through a 2 cent per ounce fee on sugary drinks that are distributed in the state.

California must get out in front of this preventable disease that is disproportionately affecting communities of color.

To “get” diabetes in our communities has become normal. As I travel across California where we host regional meetings from as far north as Eureka to El Centro in the South and all points in between, it saddens me when I ask those in the audience to raise their hands if someone in their immediate family has diabetes. It saddens me even more when I ask them if they have diabetes and they answer me, “Not yet” or “Todavia no.”

We cannot afford to wait any longer to take action.

A bill that will help Californians better understand their medication is making its way through the legislature. AB 1073, authored by Assemblymember Phil Ting, would increase access to translated prescription drug labels. Specifically, AB 1073 would require the California Board of Pharmacy to post on its website translated standardized directions for use in at least five languages other than English (Chinese, Korean, Russian, Spanish, and Vietnamese). It would also require pharmacists to provide these translated directions for their Limited English Proficient patients.

CPEHN Policy Advocate Kimberly Chen appeared on Capitol Public Radio this week to discuss how this bill would impact California's communities of color and Limited English Proficient populations:

"We know from research that patients can often misunderstand the prescription medication information, and for limited English proficient patients, these misunderstandings can be much more severe and much more frustrating," says Kimberly Chen of the California Pan-Ethnic Health Network, a supporter of the bill.

"By ensuring that they have access to medical information, it will help reduce medical errors, and ensure that patients are complying with their prescription information. It ultimately helps meet the needs of Californians."

Over 120 advocates gathered in Sacramento today to discuss legislation that could be key to improving health in California at ENACT Nutrition and Physical Activity Day. Attendees had the opportunity to hear about key legislation and learn some tips about meeting with legislators before conducting legislative visits later in the day. Here are some highlights from the day, with many posts from Twitter (#ENACT2015).

Assemblymember Phil Ting from San Francisco kicked things off with an introductory speech, acknowledging that legislators appreciate when their constituents visit with them about issues that impact the community.

This originally appeared in an email blast from Regional Asthma Management and Prevention (RAMP).

Tomorrow morning, advocates from across the state of California will converge on Sacramento for ENACT Nutrition and Physical Activity Day. We hope to see you at the Capitol – but you don’t have to be in Sacramento to participate in ENACT Day! 

If you care about the curbing consumption of sugary drinks, making school zones safer places for students who walk and bike to school, stretching the dollars of people living in poverty when they use nutrition benefits at farmers markets, and ensuring that no students start the school day hungry, Virtual ENACT Day is the place to be.  

Visit our online action center. We’ve got all the tools you need to be an outstanding e-advocate, from fact sheets and talking points to letters of support you can send directly to your legislators. If you’ll be in Sacramento tomorrow meeting with your legislators, encourage your friends and family back home to support you by joining Virtual ENACT Day. 

Whether you’re joining us at the Capitol or from your desk, we want to thank you for speaking up for a healthier, safer and more equitable California.

Here’s how you can join the action on Virtual ENACT Day:

This article originally appeared as an email statement from California Black Health Network.

It is with genuine disappointment that we inform you that SB 203, the Sugar-Sweetened Beverage Labeling Bill, authored by Senator William Monning, and co-sponsored by the California Center for Public Health Advocacy, Latino Health Access, and California Black Health Network, has failed in the Senate Health Committee with only four out of the nine Senators voting in our favor. Wednesday afternoon, Senator Ed Hernandez, Committee Chair, along with Senators Isadore Hall, Richard Roth, and Janet Nguyen abstained from voting while Senator Jim Nielsen voted against the Bill.

Senator Holly Mitchell made an impassioned, moving statement about the need for the Senate Health Committee and the Legislative body to reconcile their personal preferences with their legislative responsibility about obesity and diabetes. Kudos to Senator Mitchell for stepping up and for her support of this bill. CBHN was also very proud of our 2014 Heroes in Health Awardee, Senator Richard Pan, for his supportive public statements and prodding questions challenging the opposition. Additional thanks to Senator Lois Wolk, for her "Aye" vote, and of course, to Senator William Monning for authoring this bill.

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