Coalition Meets With Stanislaus County Employers To Address Health Care Costs
The California Health Care Coalition -- an Oakland-based consortium of unions and employers -- has met with employers in Stanislaus County to discuss strategies to addressing increasing health care costs, the Modesto Bee reports. CHCC is working to encourage labor organizations and large employers to use their buying power to require health care providers to deliver quality care at reasonable prices.
CHCC leaders are calling Stanislaus County "ground zero" in the struggle to reduce excessive hospital charges and what the coalition says is poor quality of care, the Bee reports.
According to the coalition, Memorial Medical Center and Doctors' Medical Center -- the two largest hospitals in the county -- increased prices more than 35% from 1997 to 2001. Leaders of the coalition also say the centers' facilities receive poor clinical scores from independent quality rating services.
Barbara Cooper, employee benefits manager for Stanislaus County's personnel division, said the county has not joined CHCC. However, she attended to the meeting to learn more about the coalition's mission. Cooper said CHCC is asking for a one-time $10,000 fee to join.
"We want to be involved to see how this progresses," she said, noting that the Board of Supervisors would have to consider any proposal to join CHCC. "These issues are a concern to the county as an employer" (Carlson, Modesto Bee, 7/23).