VENTURA COUNTY: Medical Society Opposes CMH Initiative
The Ventura County Medical Society Monday publicly opposed Community Memorial Hospital's proposal to divert tobacco settlement funds to private hospitals, the Ventura County Star reports. The VCMS board of governors approved its members' preference for "a more equitable system" for allocating the $261 million settlement the county expects to receive over the next 25 years. In addition to private hospitals, VCMS would like the public health system and individual physicians, who provide indigent care "for little or no compensation," to receive part of the annual settlement. The Medical Society also opposes CMH's proposal, indicating that it violates state law by reimbursing hospitals, rather than doctors, for indigent care, leaving physicians "out in the cold." CMH officials announced several weeks ago its November ballot initiative to resolve the tobacco settlement funding issue, and has given county officials a "30-day ultimatum" to craft a spending plan for the funds (O'Donnell, 5/5).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.