Contra Costa County Debates Creation of Three Centers Aimed at Providing Health Services for Women
The Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors will debate today a proposal to create three new county medical centers aimed at providing "immediate assistance to" local women without health insurance coverage, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. The plan, drafted by Supervisor Mark DeSaulnier, would establish clinics "geared toward women" that offer family planning, preventive and comprehensive health services. Although the centers would focus on women, men and children "would not be turned away," the Chronicle reports. "Women, studies are showing, more and more are the key decision makers for health care," DeSaulnier said. He added that the closure of the Mt. Diablo Hospital obstetrics unit in Concord is "an example of reduced service" to women in the county. The three new centers would be staffed by doctors and nurse practitioners and run by the county Health Services Department. Although details of the proposal still need to be hammered out, the Chronicle reports that the centers might allow uninsured individuals to pay for services on a "sliding fee" scale. DeSaulnier said that the centers also might be used to "persuade" individuals "who can afford insurance" to join Healthy Families. But funding the $33 million project may prove "difficult," Supervisor Donna Gerber said, adding that the county's finances are already "limited." DeSaulnier said that clinic funding could be taken from the county's capital improvement budget and from state funds (Johnson, San Francisco Chronicle, 6/26).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.