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July 09, 2008

Health-care crisis looms in California

To quote hospital administrator Jim Raggio, “Last year, California hospitals provided $9.7 billion in uncompensated care, including $3.5 billion in Medicare shortfalls, and $2.7 billion in losses from the MediCal program.”

Thus, nearly 64 percent of uncompensated care comes from those insured by government, not the uninsured. Physicians also fare badly under said government and private insurance programs.

There is not one nationwide or statewide price for services. Supposedly higher cost-of-living counties get higher rates, but this isn't true for Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties, which are grouped in the cheapest rates paid in California.

As for a health-care crisis, expect it to be severe in Lompoc. Several primary-care physicians have left or are contracted to leave Lompoc shortly.

It is time for the citizens of the Lompoc Valley to realize they face a local health-care crisis, one that government health care in California does much to cause. Our local hospital suffers from HMOs routinely referring specialist examinations and elective in- and out-patient hospital services to Santa Barbara, about 65 miles away, while, by law, HMOs must offer care within 30 miles. HMO patients can insist on their right to be cared for locally when appropriate health care service is available.

Click here for your free California health insurance quote today!

Posted by healthinsurance at July 9, 2008 10:43 PM