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Statement of Robert K. Ross, M.D.
Date:1/28/2008

RE: PROGRESS OF HEALTH REFORM IN CALIFORNIA

LOS ANGELES, Jan. 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Dr. Robert K. Ross, the President and CEO of The California Endowment, today issued the following statement upon the failure of ABX1:

"Our hopes for achieving comprehensive health reform took a decidedly disappointing step backward in the wake of the Senate Health Committee's failure to take action on the health reform package known as ABX1.

"Rather than engage in unproductive finger-pointing about what went wrong, there is an immediate and urgent need for the Senate, Assembly, Governor and health care stakeholders to come together and determine what actually can be done this year to begin fixing California's broken health care system.

"While ABX1 as a whole isn't going anywhere, there are elements of the package that all sides agree on and we still have an opportunity to initiate reforms that will provide a roadmap and lay the groundwork for more significant progress in the years to come. After over a year of intense negotiations and discussions, there is consensus between business, labor, doctors, health providers, consumer advocates and policymakers on what steps can and should be taken.

"All sides agree that every child in California deserves to grow up healthy, and that we ought to ensure that all kids have health care coverage. There is agreement that our hospital system should be stabilized by increasing reimbursements for medical care through public programs, and that hospitals be assessed a provider tax to help finance health system improvements.

"We can't let these reforms fall to the wayside, and our leaders should take action without delay. We still have the opportunity to give Californians a much needed health care win. Progress can still be made this year, and inaction is simply not acceptable."


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SOURCE The California Endowment
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
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