Rural Health Center Director Addresses California Health Care Issues in ‘California Connected’ Interview
"California Connected" -- a weekly, hourlong newsmagazine produced by PBS stations in Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Diego and San Francisco that covers state events and issues -- on Friday included an interview with Herrmann Spetzler, executive director of Open Door Community Health Centers in Arcata, about issues and potential strategies to address health care coverage in the state from a rural perspective. According to KVIE, about 75% of the state can be considered rural.
Spetzler said that most small business employers in California cannot afford to offer health care coverage to their workers. According to Spetzler, the U.S. health care system has "lost sight of the anthropological unit" between physicians and patients and instead employs a large number of people in health care administration.
Spetzler said the country should "look at those layers that are now using up health care resources that don't really directly affect the doctor-patient relationship and the care of the individual seeking health care and begin to convert those dollars into looking at the areas that are unmet needs."
Spetzler also discussed how telemedicine provides an "especially good opportunity" for rural areas to access health care and how partnerships between primary care physicians and specialists can make telemedicine "really worthwhile" (McRee, "California Connected," KVIE, 11/18).
The complete segment is available online in Quicktime media format.