California Watch Posts

Health Care May Be Top Issue In Governor Race

January 30, 2018

After the contentious, sometimes-raucous first debate of this year’s primary election season, it became clear that issues like offshore oil drilling, affordable housing, President Trump’s tax changes, immigration and border control would likely not be the central themes of the campaign to succeed Jerry Brown as governor. Read More

Helping Employers Wade Through the Weeds of California’s Marijuana Legalization Law

January 23, 2018

On November 8, 2016, California voters passed Proposition 64, or the Adult Use of Marijuana Act, which immediately made it legal for adults 21 years of age and older to possess and cultivate specific amounts of marijuana for recreational use. (Through a variety of legislative actions, this law and the existing California law pertaining to medicinal marijuana were combined, and the combination is now known as the Medical and Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act.) As of January 1, 2018, California adults can now buy marijuana from dispensaries licensed by the state of California.  While several states have legalized marijuana for medicinal purposes, only eight have legalized recreational marijuana, and only very recently.  In this brave new world, many employers will have questions about how these new laws affect their existing substance abuse and drug-testing policies.    Read More

California Nurses and Anthony Rendon are Still Sparring Over Single-Payer Bill

January 23, 2018

Time has not healed all wounds between Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon and the California Nurses Association. Rendon, a Paramount Democrat, infuriated the nurses last June when he abruptly shelvedSenate Bill 562, the measure they sponsored to create a government-run universal health care system in California, calling it “woefully incomplete.” Read More

DMHC Demands 9 Health Plans Transfer 600,000 Patients From Troubled Medical Group

January 9, 2018

In an unusual move, state regulators are ordering nine health plans to terminate their contracts with Employee Health Systems Medical Group Inc. and transfer 600,000 patients to different health care providers, after a company affiliated with Employee Health Systems was accused of blocking patients' access to specialists to hold down costs. Read More

Defending Against This Season’s Deadly Flu: 5 Things To Know Now

January 9, 2018

Flu is widespread in 46 states, including California, according to the latest reports to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Nationally, as of mid-December, at least 106 people had died from the infectious disease. At least 27 Californians younger than 65 had died as of Friday, seven of them during the week before Christmas. And states across the country are reporting higher-than-average flu-related hospitalizations and emergency room visits. Read More