Health

News on health, wellness and health care

Courtesy Kaweah Delta Health Care District.

Today is the deadline for residents in Visalia to have their ballots postmarked in a big vote that could determine the future of the Kaweah Delta Hospital. The hospital is asking the community to tax itself to support a new acute care wing. But the push has generated opposition in the community and from the head of a neighboring hospital.

First, a bit of background, state law requires that every hospital be hardened against earthquakes by 2030.

Courtesy Friends of Kaweah Delta

Residents of Visalia have just a few more days to decide if they will approve a bond known as Measure H for Kaweah Delta Hospital to build a new earthquake resistant acute care wing.

State law requires that every hospital to be hardened against earthquakes by 2030. As a result, the hospital is asking for more than $300 million in public bond to help pay for the hospital.

Kaweah is putting up over $200 million for the project, its statutory cap. The bond will be paid back in the form of a property tax increase.

Many valley residents struggle to access drinking water—some don’t have enough, while others face contamination. Now, a new law allows the state to step in and help those in need. In its first success story, the law didn't just bring water to a community; it helped end a standoff with a neighboring city.

http://www.chcf.org

A new report released today shows that Fresno’s health care market is changing. The number of people with health coverage has seen a significant increase, which has been good for the bottom line of local hospitals.  Other market forces are pushing local physicians to consolidate their private practices into larger medical groups, often affiliated with hospitals.

Effort To End "Surprise" Medical Bills Resumes In Sacramento

Mar 22, 2016
Photo used under Creative Commons from Andy Patterson / Modern Relics / http://www.flickr.com/photos/modernrelics/4461010654/

An effort to do away with “surprise medical bills” narrowly failed in the California Legislature last year, but patient and consumer advocates think they can resurrect it this year. Ben Bradford reports from Sacramento.

Infographic courtesy of UCLA Center for Health Policy Research Chronic Disease Program

A new study out of UCLA estimates that 46 percent of adults in California have prediabetes, a precursor to diabetes marked by high blood sugar. The study suggests the risk is even higher in the San Joaquin Valley. In Fresno County, the rate could be as high as 49 percent.  "It's a major issue of health equity," says Harold Goldstein, executive director of UCLA’s Center for Health Policy Research and author of the study.

The Dolores Huerta Foundation

Immigration advocates are starting a new outreach effort in Kern County to enroll undocumented children in Medi-Cal. This is the first year undocumented kids can enroll in the government-sponsored insurance program.

David Gorn / California Healthline

This story first appeared on California Healthline on February 24, 2016. David Gorn reports for California Healthline and can be reached at dgor@kff.org. He tweets @dgornreports.

Hilary Baldi can’t get her mind around the idea that she might have to stop seeing many of the children with autism whom she has been helping for years.

 Baldi has been running a nonprofit called Behavioral Intervention for Autism for 23 years now. She has offices in Emeryville and Fresno.

Joe Moore / Valley Public Radio

The Valley Air District says local air quality forecasts might soon get worse, even if the air  is actually getting better. FM89’s Joe Moore explains. 

The problem is summertime ozone pollution. Last year, the valley exceeded the federal, 8-hour ozone health standard 80 times. That sounds like a lot, and it is, but it’s also the lowest level on record for the region, and it’s down over 25 percent since 2011. 

Group Hopes To Change Fresno's Food Economy

Feb 16, 2016
Ali Budner

Hundreds of different food crops are raised in and around Fresno County. But many of those who live and work nearby have little access to the fruits of their own landscape. In fact, more people go hungry here in the Fresno metropolitan area than almost anywhere else in the entire nation. It’s this not-so-modest problem that Food Commons Fresno wants to solve — starting with their Community Supported Agriculture (or CSA) brand, OOOOBY.

"OOOOBY! Get used to saying it. OOOOBY, Out Of Our Own Backyards…."

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