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Federal reform won’t mean end of Healthy SF program

April 22, 2010

The federal health care overhaul signed last month by President Obama will not prompt significant changes in the short term for Healthy San Francisco, the city program that provides medical care for more than 51,000 low-income residents. And even when most major provisions of the federal law take effect in 2014, city officials say, there will still be a need for Healthy San Francisco to serve an estimated 20,000 patients who will not have health insurance under the federal law, including many who are in the country illegally.

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Flood of new patients forces SF General to innovate

April 11, 2010

For hospital administrator Roland Pickens, Healthy San Francisco offers more than universal health care and coverage for the city’s uninsured. The three-year-old city program also is inspiring new approaches to streamlining medical care. Pickens, chief operating officer of San Francisco General Hospital, said the city health care program has led to innovations that include evening and weekend clinics, better care of patients with chronic conditions, electronic referrals that speed up the appointment process and a teleconferencing system that has doubled the availability of interpreters. The hospital has come up with new ideas out of necessity. Its caseload has mushroomed with Healthy San Francisco; more than 8,000 patients have chosen the public hospital as their medical home.

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This employer supports health care mandate

April 4, 2010

The Nibbi Brothers construction company is a big supporter of San Francisco’s nearly universal health care program, even though it includes a mandate on employers to provide benefits to their workers. Bib Nibbi, the company’s president, says the law levels the playing field with companies that bid against him and win by slashing their labor costs. The city, he says, should avoid a “race to the bottom.” Fifth in a series by Healthy Cal contributor Richard Paddock.

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For universal health care, but not on his shoulders

March 28, 2010

Daniel Scherotter, a restaurant owner and chef, is leading the fight against Healthy San Francisco. It is not that he opposes the health care program. He simply thinks the city’s businesses, particularly restaurants, should not be required to finance universal health care. Fourth part of a series by HealthyCal contributor Richard C. Paddock.

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In San Francisco, a rush for health care

March 20, 2010

A San Francisco clinic that serves the poor was flooded with new patients when the city created its Healthy San Francisco program. Now the doctor who runs the clinic is preaching prevention for those patients. Third in a series on universal health care in San Francisco. By HealthyCal contributor Richard C. Paddock.

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Health reform is already here — in San Francisco

March 7, 2010

The overhaul of America’s health care system may be stalled in Washington, but in San Francisco, a new method of delivering health care is already in place. Known as Healthy San Francisco, it is designed to care for the poor and under-served. It provides universal access to health care, comes with a public option, and has no exclusion for prior medical conditions. HealthyCal.org contributor Richard C. Paddock has the first part of a series on the program and the people it serves.

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