Government

Drink, Drugs and Disclosure Day For Doctors

Monday is Drink, Drugs and Disclosure Day for doctors in Sacramento when three major patient safety bills are scheduled to be heard in the Senate Business & Professions committee.

The common theme is oversight and transparency for doctors. Will the Senate require openness and accountability from the medical community, especially when drugs and alcohol are involved?

Air Board Candidate Represented Lead Polluter

UPDATE: SQAMD hired Wayne Nastri as executive director on Friday. 
As early as tomorrow morning, the board of the South Coast Air Quality Management District could name Wayne Nastri to take the place of ousted executive Barry Wallerstein. Nastri, according to environmental regulators at the Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC), would be a nasty piece of news.
 

Execs Can't Explain How Consumers Benefit From Anthem-Cigna Merger

Yesterday in San Francisco, Anthem VP Jay Wagner and Cigna’s Tom Richards refused to commit to price reductions for California consumers if the $54 Billion deal for Anthem to buy Cigna is approved.

In fact, Anthem and Cigna’s executives could not provide any concrete examples of how the Anthem-Cigna merger would benefit consumers at the four-hour hearing into the merger I attended at the Department of Insurance.

Jerry Brown's Exide Chutzpah

 
UPDATE, March 31, 2016 -- Governor Brown has now rescinded his exemption of the Exide lead cleanup from the state's signature environmental law, CEQA. He reversed himself only under intense pubilc scrutiny of the administration's handling of the Exide cleanup.

Was Health Net-Centene Merger Approval A One-Off, Or Tone-Setting for Anthem, Aetna Deals?

Did California regulators' approval of the Centene and Health Net merger give a preview of how reviews of Anthem's proposed consolidation with Cigna will go down? Let's hope not. Conditions for Health Net were a world away from what regulators will find in the Anthem-Cigna deal. (More on those hearings here.)  
 

California Medical Association Stands Alone Against Prescription Drug Reform

The California Medical Association should get over its reactionary opposition to reform that would curb the prescription opioid and heroin overdose epidemic.

Yesterday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued new painkiller prescription guidelines recommending that doctors check state prescription drug databases before prescribing opioids to a patient. This simple tool has been proven to reduce overprescribing, but only when doctors are required to use it.

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