Healthy San Francisco’s Enrollment at 43,000 at Two-Year Anniversary
Healthy San Francisco has enrolled 43,000 city residents during its two years of operation and continues to add 1,800 participants each month, suggesting that the program is approaching its goal of serving 60,000 uninsured city residents, HealthLeaders Media reports.
The program strives to facilitate health care access for all San Francisco residents by requiring all city employers with 20 or more workers to:
- Provide health insurance benefits;
- Contribute to employee medical reimbursement accounts; or
- Pay into the city's fund for Healthy San Francisco.
The program is not health insurance because it only covers services in San Francisco.
Early evaluations also suggest that the program has helped reduce the need for certain costly medical services, such as emergency care.
During its two years of operation, the number of hospital admissions declined from 28.2 per 1,000 participants to 18.4 per 1,000. In addition, average hospital stays decreased from 103 days per 1,000 participants to 61 days per 1,000.
Ken Jacobs, chair of the Labor Center at UC-Berkeley, said San Francisco's program "has a number of features that should serve as a model for a national policy" on boosting health care coverage.
Lawsuit RemainsThe Golden Gate Restaurant Association is challenging the provision of Healthy San Francisco that requires employers to contribute to workers' health care.Â The group has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to consider the issue (Clark, HealthLeaders Media, 7/2). 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.