Posts Tagged: medications

Opinion

Health care and the pain of losing Medi-Cal coverage

A doctor examines a young patient at a hospital. (Photo: wavebreakmedia, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: A few months ago, I turned 19 years old. Approaching the last year of my teenage years should have been exciting, but instead it was bittersweet. On my birthday, I lost access to my Medi-Cal coverage and all of the preventative health care services that it provided. I spent the days leading up to my birthday rushing to complete all of the final health check-ups I could fit in, before I lost coverage – possibly forever.

Opinion

Costly drugs or access to health care: Should we really have to choose?

A physician flanked by the California flag. (Illustration: Niyazz, via Shutterstock).

OPINION: Prices for prescription drugs are rising precipitously, seriously threatening public and private healthcare budgets, and creating barriers preventing patients from accessing needed therapies. Pharmaceuticals now account for 19 percent of employer spending and Medicare spending on healthcare and, with a slew of approvals of new $100,000+ medications, there is no relief in sight.

Opinion

Mental illness: Treating patients as individuals

Close to 1.2 million adults in California live with serious mental illnesses. Each one of these cases is an individual—a parent or sibling or child—and no two people battling the same condition respond to the same treatment alike. Treating mental conditions—and in fact, treating all illnesses—has to be based on the fact that every person is unique and each patient requires therapies that suit him or her best.

Opinion

Insurers’ ‘specialty tiers’ imperil health care

OPINION: Rather than paying a fixed copayment, Californians whose medications are placed on specialty tiers are often forced to pay coinsurance – or a percentage of the total cost of the drugs – which can mean hundreds or even thousands of dollars per month in out-of-pocket costs for a single medication.

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