CA Access News

January 2013


In this Issue: Features | Advocate Advantage | Calendar | Welcome New Partners | In the News | Interesting Information | Contact Us


California gains conditional approval of health care marketplace

By Kevin Yamamura
Sacramento Bee, January 3, 2013

The Obama administration gave California's subsidized health care marketplace conditional approval today as the state prepares to sign up subscribers in October.

The marketplace, dubbed Covered California, plans to serve hundreds of thousands of uninsured residents who are eligible in 2014 for federal subsidies to obtain health coverage. Starting next year, all Americans are required to obtain insurance or pay a penalty under the 2010 federal health care overhaul.

California has received $237 million in federal grants so far to build its marketplace, which pays for a new IT system that enrolls subscribers statewide, marketing efforts and staff to operate the program. Federal officials are watching California with particular interest, given that it is the most populous state and has unique language and cultural barriers among its uninsured population.

To date, the federal government has approved so-called "health exchanges" in 19 states and Washington, D.C.

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Lack of interpreters hampers farmworkers' health

By Kate Moser
HealthyCal, January 8, 2013

California has some of the nation's toughest laws meant to ensure equal health care services for people who aren't fluent in English.

But many limited English-speaking patients still lack the interpreters necessary to have meaningful communication with medical providers, particularly in emergency scenarios. The problem is acute for the communities of indigenous Mexican immigrants in California, advocates and practitioners say.

"The root of the problem is that until fairly recently, the huge indigenous population in California was under the radar," said Sandra Young, a family nurse practitioner at a clinic in Oxnard and the president of the Mixteco/Indigena Community Organizing Project.

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Advocate Advantage

Wellness and Health Care Costs

By John Kehoe

2013 has arrived. With each New Year, there are new resolutions, which usually last for a brief time until we move on to other needs. This year, one resolution worth keeping is to pay attention to our individual health needs. This year, America will be wading into uncharted waters of affordable health care implementation. There are terms that will be more frequent in our lexicon, such as exchanges, insurance coverage, etc.

It is vital that we all become conscious of what we can do to help promote to better health. Understanding the role of a proper diet is extremely important. Using books, pamphlets and the Internet we can provide great information on various health topics, including cholesterol, and its potential to contribute to fatal heart conditions. A healthy diet can combat high cholesterol and studies have shown that apples are very helpful in lowering cholesterol.

Do you know your LDL (Low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol? This count should be routine, like taking your blood pressure and pulse. As our nation goes on a collective journey towards better health, it is important to continue the discussion of diets and their connection to obesity.

This should be the year we individually help ourselves move towards better health. Personal health and wellness can contribute to keeping costs under control, as we journey through affordable health care together.

Happy (and healthy) New Year to all!


Check out our CPAT partner events occurring this month!

Were you unable to attend a CPAT event? All program materials are housed on our website.

Would you like to see your organization's event listed? Contact Jason Dumont at to help advertise your upcoming event.

Welcome New Partners

Community Resource Center of San Clemente

Join Now

Do you know a group who would be interested in joining CPAT? Please send your referrals to:

Northern California - Contact Jason Dumont at

Southern California - Contact Brandon Stephenson at

In the News

San Diego Diabetes Program Working, Gaining Attention

By Lisa Zamosky
California Healthline, January 3, 2012

Over the past 15 years, more than 18,000 San Diegans with diabetes have been involved in a focused care management program that has proven to be both clinically and cost effective, according to recent findings.

A study published in the fall issue of the journal Clinical Diabetes compiles research that was conducted over the course of 15 years to explore health and economic benefits of diabetes treatment through the Scripps Whittier Diabetes Institute's Project Dulce.

Project Dulce began in 1997 in response to "an identified need for improved diabetes care in underserved diverse ethnic populations in San Diego County," said Athena Philis-Tsimikas, corporate vice president at Scripps Whittier Diabetes Institute and lead author of the study.

As part of a collaborative effort with San Diego County, the Community Health Centers network and San Diego State University behavioral health scientists, Scripps Whittier Diabetes Institute designed a model aimed at improving diabetes patient care and clinical outcomes at a time when little information was available about effective care models that could be integrated into the primary care setting.

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Elevated rates of invasive breast cancer in Bay Area cities

By Leah Bartos
HealthyCal, January 3, 2013

Though the exact causes of breast cancer remain a mystery, a new mapping study in California has brought researchers another step closer to unlocking answers.

By charting data on a hyper-local level, the California Breast Cancer Mapping Project of the Public Health Institute discovered significantly heightened rates of invasive breast cancer in four areas that had previously gone undetected. In the newly discovered areas of concern -- the report stops short of calling them "cancer clusters" -- researchers found the invasive breast cancer incidence to be 10 to 20 percent higher than the state average.

The four areas include swaths of the north and south San Francisco Bay Area, neighboring sections of east Ventura and west Los Angeles counties, and the southern portion of Orange County, spilling into a small part of Riverside County. The project used data reported to the California Cancer Registry from 2000 to 2008.

In the past, breast cancer rates had been calculated only on the county level. Eric Roberts, the lead author of the study, explained that the old method missed some significant pockets, as county boundaries are somewhat arbitrary when it comes to mapping disease.

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School Health Centers Get Final Health Reform Grants

By Kelley Weiss
KQED's The California Report, January 4, 2013

The last influx of federal funds to boost California's school health centers came just before the New Year.

Through the Affordable Care Act 31 California school health centers received more than $14 million in December.

This final round of grants brought California's total federal funding to more than $30 million since 2011, the most of any state.

School-based health centers, which are usually on or adjacent to schools in low- income areas, offer students -- and sometimes community members -- free primary care. Several also have dental clinics and more than half provide mental health services.

Serena Clayton is the executive director of the California School Health Centers Association. She says the federal money has gone to 70 school health centers across the state to make it easier for thousands of children to access health care.

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Interesting Information

California's unprecedented role in new treatments

BayBio, January 7, 2013

BayBio, in collaboration with CHI and PwC, introduced the 2013 California Biomedical Industry Report at a globally broadcast press conference in San Francisco. The 2013 report found California to be:

  • No. 1 in jobs: Biomedical industry employment in California has grown at an average annual rate of 0.5 percent over the past five years. There are currently 269,997 people employed in the total biomedical industry, and 152,806 employees in the core sectors of biopharmaceuticals, medical devices, instruments and diagnostics, and research and development/testing laboratories.
  • No. 1 in new treatments to patients: Twenty-one percent of the nation's biomedical R&D pipeline is comprised of innovation from California laboratories.
  • No. 1 in venture capital investments: California biomedical companies secured $1.98 billion in venture capital investment through the first three quarters of 2012, a greater amount than any other state and equal to the total combined amount that went to companies in the next eight states, ranked by VC investments.
  • No. 1 in federal funding: $3.33 billion in funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) went to California institutions, more than any other state and 15.1 percent of total national NIH funding.

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