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California Watch

News stories in this section spotlight activities in California, including actions by the state Assembly and state Senate; proposed legislation; regulators like the Department of Managed Health Care and Department of Insurance; and the state ACA exchange, Covered California.

California’s Resolve Questioned After It Grants Medi-Cal Contract Concessions

California’s decision last month to cancel the results of a long-planned bidding competition among commercial health plans in its Medicaid program has some industry insiders and consumer advocates wondering whether the state can stand up to insurers and force improvements in care for millions of low-income beneficiaries.

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State COVID Testing Sites Begin To Close

California is preparing to close dozens of state-run COVID-19 testing and treatment sites ahead of the planned end of the state of emergency in February.

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California Lawsuit Accuses Six Companies Of Driving Up Insulin Costs

California is suing several companies that dominate the U.S. insulin market, accusing them of driving up prices. “We’re going to level the playing field and make this lifesaving drug more affordable for all who need it by putting an end to big pharma’s big profit scheme,” Attorney General Rob Bonta says after filing the lawsuit ...

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California Attorney General Sues Drugmakers Over Inflated Insulin Prices

California Attorney General Rob Bonta on Thursday sued the six major companies that dominate the U.S. insulin market, ratcheting up the state’s assault on a profitable industry for artificially jacking up prices and making the indispensable drug less accessible for diabetes patients.

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A New Era in Healthcare Cost Regulation in California

On June 30, 2022, Governor Gavin Newsom approved SB 184, the California Healthcare Quality and Affordability Act, a far-reaching law that will have a significant impact on the delivery and payment for healthcare services in California.

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Will XBB.1.5, The Latest Omicron Subvariant, Fuel Another California COVID Surge? What We Know

The latest Omicron subvariant — perhaps the most infectious yet — has gained a foothold in California, a potentially problematic development given the possibility of a post-holiday spike. However, it’s unclear whether the circulation of this latest strain, XBB.1.5, will alter the trajectory of the COVID-19 pandemic. A slew of alphanumerically designated coronavirus subvariants, each more ...

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Why Hospitals Are Struggling To Meet Earthquake Safety Deadline

Jerold Phelps Community Hospital in Garberville, California is one of the smallest in the country. Its mere nine acute-care beds serve a community of about 10,000 people in southern Humboldt County. The next closest emergency room is about an hour’s drive north. Despite its small size, the hospital is facing a hefty price tag to ...

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California Senate’s New Health Chair to Prioritize Mental Health and Homelessness

California state Sen. Susan Talamantes Eggman, a Stockton Democrat who was instrumental in passing Gov. Gavin Newsom’s signature mental health care legislation last year, has been appointed to lead the Senate’s influential health committee, a change that promises a more urgent focus on expanding mental health services and moving homeless people into housing and treatment.

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California Awards Managed Care Contracts To Molina, Elevance Health And Others For 2024

California has awarded managed care plan contracts to five insurers to serve Medicaid beneficiaries across 21 counties in the state in 2024.

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New Compliance Requirement For California Insurance Agents’ Email Communications

Under new California law (SB 1242) effective January 1, 2023, California insurance agents are required to list their insurance license numbers on all email communications.

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