Hurting San Francisco Tourism Industry Impacts City Budget, May Boost Public Health System’s Patient Load
More people in San Francisco may need to rely on public hospitals and clinics due to the area's "soft economy," the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Revenue for the city is falling and the city's budget may reach a $100 million deficit by the end of the fiscal year. In addition, tax receipts related to tourism, the city's top industry, have declined significantly since the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, resulting in layoffs in the service industry. The Chronicle reports the loss of jobs will leave more people without health coverage, forcing them to turn to public facilities for care. Due to the tightening budget, Dr. Mitch Katz, San Francisco's public health director, has placed one-time grants awarded to city contractors "on hold" for now. The city's current $5.2 billion budget is its "largest ever"; losing between $60 to $100 million would not cause a "collapse" of city services, the Chronicle reports (Gordon, San Francisco Chronicle, 10/11).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.