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Is the ACA the road to semi-single payer?

January 31, 2013

As the full implementation of the Affordable Care Act approaches, the most important question might be this: how are employers going to react? Early indications suggest that many companies — and perhaps even unions — will drop coverage for workers and send them to the newly created, subsidized insurance exchanges instead. Eventually, this could create a series of defacto single-payer plans.

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In the Central Valley, organic farming is slowly taking hold

January 31, 2013

In the Central Valley, organic farming is slowly taking hold

By Alexia Underwood

Organic farms and ranches in California are mainly concentrated in coastal areas. In the vast agricultural belt of the Central Valley, where almost half of the produce in the U.S. is grown, most farmers are still using traditional growing methods. Recently, though, that seems to be changing.

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Poll: 55 percent support health reform in California

January 30, 2013

A record-high number of Californians now support the Affordable Care Act — President Barack Obama’s federal health reform plan, according to a new independent poll.

The survey, by the Public Policy Institute of California, also found the highest support ever for a plan to allow undocumented immigrants to become legal U.S. residents.

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Faith community nurses reach out for Central Valley health

January 30, 2013

Faith community nurses reach out for Central Valley health

Faith nurses help communities stay well in Fresno with duties ranging from home visits, help around the house, first aid – and much needed support for the sick.

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Report on re-arrest rates highlights potential and shortfalls of prison reform

January 30, 2013

By Heather Tirado Gilligan

A report released last week sheds new light on what’s driving arrest rates in California – and what prison reform can do to better prevent crime.

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Special Needs Children Struggle to Obtain Quality Health Care

January 29, 2013

By Rosa Ramirez

California children with special needs often receive less-than-adequate health care services, regardless of whether they are covered by private or public health insurance, a new analysis has found.

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Impact of receding Salton Sea unknown

January 29, 2013

Impact of receding Salton Sea unknown

By Robert Fulton

The Salton Sea is shrinking, making it shallower and more susceptible to events such as the Big Stink. But while the hydrogen sulfide can be dismissed as more of an inconvenience than a hazard, a greater threat may be looming.

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Too early to judge prison reform

January 28, 2013

By Daniel Weintraub

Film at eleven.

Those three words became a part of our language thanks to local television news, which employed them to tease viewers into staying up late to see footage of the latest grisly crime scene.

And that sensational crime coverage, in turn, has kept many Californians in the dark about just how much safer their streets are today than they were 10, 20 or 30 years ago.

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The Difference Between Poverty and Mental Illness

January 28, 2013

The Difference Between Poverty and Mental Illness

By Elise Craig

Judith Baer is worried about how poor people, especially poor mothers, are labeled with diagnoses of mental health problems. Once a teenage mother, today she is a professor who understands the anxiety that comes with poverty— and she wants the diagnostic manual to reflect that kind of understanding, too.

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Medical interpreters plan to help more Californians find a voice

January 27, 2013

By Kibkabe Araya

Almost 7 million Californians speak limited or no English, and many of them may become insured soon thanks to federal health care reform. Medical interpreters are preparing to be outnumbered by this population while still fighting language barriers.

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