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Art With Elders: Stop Making Sense

July 20, 2014

Art With Elders:  Stop Making Sense

By Matt Perry

When expressionist painters like Pablo Picasso, Otto Dix and Barnett Newman waved their defiant brushes over blank canvases, they rebelled against the “logical minds” that had brought about one World War, then another. Art, they insisted, should free the mind from oppressive reality.

So it’s not surprising that in the shadow of the Beat Generation and Sixties counterculture, a Bay Area arts program has gained prominence in helping older adults circumvent constrictive thought to free the artist within.

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State Agency Running Medi-Cal Didn’t Know How Many Docs Took its Insurance

July 17, 2014

State Agency Running Medi-Cal Didn’t Know How Many Docs Took its Insurance

By Hannah Guzik

The California agency that oversees the state’s low-income health plan vastly overstated the number of doctors who accepted patients through the state program last year, even as the number of people enrolled in the program was set to skyrocket under the federal Affordable Care Act, the California Health Report has found.

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Denti-Cal Patients Feel the Pain as Rates Shrink

July 16, 2014

Denti-Cal Patients Feel the Pain as Rates Shrink

By Pamela K. Johnson

A few years ago, Kathleen Hamilton became a foster mom to 13 and 14 year old boys, who also happened to be her nephews. Both needed extensive dental work, and the services were to be covered by the state’s Medi-Cal program. But year after year, Hamilton ran into a snag.

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State restores some funding for kids with special needs

July 8, 2014

State restores some funding for kids with special needs

By Lisa Renner

Born five weeks premature, 2-year-old Corbin can’t speak as well as other children his age. But the Modesto toddler is improving all the time because of an infant development specialist provided by California’s Early Start program.

Now more infants and toddlers with developmental delays and those at risk of delays will receive those services because of the state Legislature’s recent move to restore funding of the program to 2009 levels.

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Dementia, The Greatest Generation, and a Ray of Sunshine

July 7, 2014

Dementia, The Greatest Generation, and a Ray of Sunshine

By Matt Perry

After restaurateur Sam Stelletello opened Sunshine Care to offer high-quality assisted living to World War II’s “Greatest Generation,” nearly all of his aging residents succumbed to dementia – most frequently Alzheimer’s disease.

As Sunshine’s original 10-bed 1990 facility expanded into today’s immaculate seven-building site in the hills of homespun Poway – San Diego County’s “City in the Country” – the residents’ natural cognitive decline spawned one of the state’s few facilities devoted to patients with dementia.

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A day in the life of a Kitchen Diva

July 6, 2014

By Pamela K. Johnson

In this story, you’ll meet Veronica Mayes-Jackson, a Kitchen Diva who’s educating members of her community in Los Angeles about how to change their lifestyle in order to improve their health. Learn more about the Kitchen Divas and their parent organization, Black Women for Wellness, in our profile of the organization.

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Insurance Could Help Former Inmates, But State and County Problems Have Slowed Enrollment

July 3, 2014

Insurance Could Help Former Inmates, But State and County Problems Have Slowed Enrollment

By Angela Woodall

California’s ambitious plan to enroll former prison and jail inmates in health insurance as part of an expansion funded by the Affordable Care Act has been foiled by an applications logjam, administrative errors and bureaucratic roadblocks.

Advocates across California who work with former inmates have been trying since January to get them signed up for Medi-Cal, the state’s low-income health plan, in the hopes that having access to doctors, mental health services and addiction treatment might help keep them out of jail.

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Innovation Programs Aim to Improve Care for Seniors and the Poor, But Are the Results Reliable?

June 17, 2014

Innovation Programs Aim to Improve Care for Seniors and the Poor, But Are the Results Reliable?

By Genevieve Bookwalter

Donald Vidal has had both of his knees replaced, but the 85-year-old Novato resident experienced different levels of care with each procedure. Although the same surgeon performed both operations, during the second one Vidal was part of a federal pilot program that aims to improve care and save money.

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Despite Need, Indigenous Farmworkers Have Little Access to Mental Health Services in California

June 15, 2014

Despite Need, Indigenous Farmworkers Have Little Access to Mental Health Services in California

 

By Hannah Guzik

When Irene Gomez emigrated from Mexico at 14, she immediately began working in the strawberry fields in the Oxnard Plain.

The work was exhausting, poorly paid and unreliable — but that was the least of her problems. She was also helping a friend escape from a violent relationship and was worried about living in the U.S.

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Concierge Medicine Expected to Grow Under Health Reform

June 10, 2014

Concierge Medicine Expected to Grow Under Health Reform

By Chris Richard

Paying extra for better access to a doctor, often called concierge medicine, is drawing new attention, at least in part in response to the Affordable Care Act. Although adherents are still few in number, concierge medicine is growing in popularity, particularly in California.

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