California Information

California Chapter

PNHP California
Website: http://www.pnhpcalifornia.org
E-mail: info@pnhpcalifornia.org

NorCal Office:
Phone: 510-590-9692
Fax: 510-590-9780
620 3rd St.
Oakland, CA 94607

SoCal Office:
Phone: 213-482-0256
1137 Wilshire Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90017

Allied Organizations

AllCare Alliance
Website: http://www.allcarealliance.org
Email: georgia@allcarealliance.org
Phone: 213-482-0256

California Health Professional Student Alliance
Website: http://www.CaHPSA.org/
Phone: 213-482-0256

California OneCare
Website: http://californiaonecare.org/

Health Care for All — California
Website: http://www.healthcareforall.org/
Phone: 1-888-442-4255

Single Payer Now!
Website: http://singlepayernow.net/

Media Contacts

Don McCanne, MD
(949) 493.3714

(PNHP Senior Health Policy Fellow) Dr. McCanne is a family physician in San Clemente, California. For three decades, Dr. McCanne has allotted one-half of his practice hours to indigent patients. He has written extensively in the lay press on single payer and patient-oriented health care, often using the concept of “Universal Medicare” as a model for single payer that the public can understand and support.

Claudia Chaufan, MD | (831) 420-1874 | claudiachaufan@yahoo.com
Dr. Chaufan practiced medicine in her native Argentina before earning a doctorate in sociology in the U.S.  Now assistant professor at the Institute for Health & Aging at UCSF, she teaches sociology of health and medicine, sociology of power, public health, comparative health care systems, and sociological theory.

Paul Y. Song, MD - radiation oncology, Los Angeles | (310) 310-1992 | paulysong@yahoo.com
Paul Y. Song, M.D., is a board-certified radiation oncologist and a board member of Physicians for a National Health Program California. He is on the faculty at the Samuel Oschin Cancer Center at Cedars Sinai Medical Center and an adjunct faculty member at the John Wayne Cancer Institute. He is also the chief medical officer at Berg Pharma.

Dr. Song was recently named the first visiting fellow in the Office of the Insurance Commissioner in the California Department of Insurance, working on health care policy.

Dr. Song attended the University of Chicago where he graduated with honors. He received his medical degree from George Washington University, and completed his residency in radiation oncology at University of Chicago Medical Center.

Dr. Song is also an executive board member of The Courage Campaign, People for the American Way, and Liberty in North Korea, and served as co-chair of the Asian-American Finance Committee for California Attorney General Kamala Harris. He was a frequent contributor to Larry King Live during the health care reform debate and is a regular contributor to Extra TV for cancer related topics. He resides in Santa Monica, Calif.

Henry Abrons, MD, MPH | (510) 848-5765 | habrons@gmail.com
Dr. Abrons is Board President of PNHP California and also a member of the Board of Directors for PNHP. He is a retired physician specializing in Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine. He has trained and worked in public hospitals in New York City, Chicago, West Virginia, and Oakland.

Bill Skeen, MD, MPH | 510-502-8673 | Bill@pnhpcalifornia.org
Dr. Skeen, the Executive Director of Physicians for a National Health Program California, has more than fifteen years experience in public health advocacy. Prior to his work in public health, Dr. Skeen practiced emergency medicine.

Local Governments Endorsing H.R. 676

  • Santa Cruz, CA
  • West Hollywood, CA
  • Santa Monica City Council

Local Unions Endorsing H.R. 676

  • California School Employees Association (CSEA), AFL-CIO, San Jose, CA
  • Plumbers, Steamfitters, and Refrigeration Fitters Local 393, San Jose, CA
  • California State Pipe Trades Council, United Association, AFL-CIO
  • California Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee CNA/NNOC
  • South Bay AFL-CIO Labor Council, San Jose, CA
  • Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 409, United Association, San Luis Obispo, CA
  • USW Local 675, Carson, CA
  • Santa Clara & San Benito Counties Building & Construction Trades Council, San Jose, CA
  • AFSCME Retiree Chapter 36, Los Angeles, CA
  • San Francisco Web Pressmen & Prepress Workers Union Local 4N, IBT
  • International Longshore & Warehouse Union (ILWU), San Francisco, CA,
  • North Bay Labor Council, AFL-CIO, Santa Rosa, CA
  • San Francisco Central Labor Council, San Francisco, CA
  • San Bernardino/Riverside Counties Central Labor Council AFL-CIO, Riverside, CA
  • Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1589
  • San Mateo County Central Labor Council


California State News

Posted on Thursday, July 3, 2014

By Emily Dalton, M.D.
When inquired if Godzilla was “good or bad,” producer Shogo Tomiyama likened it to a Shinto “God of Destruction” which lacks moral agency and cannot be held to human standards of good and evil. “He totally destroys everything and then there is a rebirth; something new and fresh can begin,” he said.

Posted on Tuesday, February 18, 2014

By Steven Maiken | The Daily Sundial (Northridge, Calif.)
Canadians don’t drop dead or delay care due to the lack of health insurance. However in America, thousands will continue to face death according to Harvard researchers. About 25 million people will still not have insurance under Obamacare.

Posted on Tuesday, January 7, 2014

By C.V. Allen, M.D. | The Modesto Bee
They are one American in six. They range in age from newborn to 65. They might be anyone – even your neighbor. They are America’s problem and America’s shame. They are America’s 47 million medically uninsured.

Posted on Monday, November 18, 2013

By Jerome P. Helman, M.D. | Los Angeles Times
We should not sit idly by. The time has come to eliminate the complicit health insurers, place price controls on medications and medical equipment, and make hospitalization affordable to all. We need single-payer now: Medicare for all.

Posted on Monday, July 29, 2013

By Aldebra Schroll, M.D. | Chico (Calif.) News & Review
On July 30, the Medicare program will mark its 48th birthday.

Posted on Thursday, April 11, 2013

By Tom Reed | Chico Enterprise-Record
Health care costs have, over the past quarter century, increased at more than twice the rate of overall inflation without any help whatsoever from Obamacare. The real culprit is a fragmented, irrational health care financing and delivery system more dedicated to corporate profits than public health.

Posted on Wednesday, February 13, 2013

By Kathy Robertson | Sacramento Business Journal
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- “Everybody in, nobody out” was the chant by a couple hundred people gathered at the Capitol at noon on Monday to rally for a single-payer, universal health care system in California.

Posted on Monday, February 11, 2013

By Paul O'Rourke-Babb and Joseph Katz | Chico News & Review
CHICO, Calif. -- In the fall of 2011 a few Chico State students founded the local chapter of the California Health Professional Student Alliance (CaHPSA). CaHPSA is a student-based advocacy group working alongside Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP) to institute a public single-payer health-insurance system in the state of California.

Posted on Monday, October 29, 2012

By Charles V. Allen, M.D. | The Modesto (Calif.) Bee
A handful of other countries — all first world, industrial, democratic and yes, capitalistic — nations have achieved four things we have not: coverage of all citizens, costs half to two-thirds our cost, equal or better medical outcomes and a level of public support higher than ours.

Posted on Monday, August 20, 2012

By Teryl Zarnow | The Orange County Register
Dr. Don McCanne describes an alternative that sounds stunning in its simplicity: Everyone would be automatically enrolled in a national health plan at birth. There would be no deductible, no out-of-pocket, no coinsurance, and no networks. It's similar to Canada's national insurance. "It returns choice to the patient and removes monetary barriers to care," he says.

Posted on Tuesday, June 26, 2012

By Mari Edlin | California Healthline
Neither the Affordable Care Act nor the challenges it faces in the Supreme Court has stopped the wheels from turning for the California Nurses Association, Physicians for a National Health Program and Campaign for a Healthy California.

Posted on Monday, June 18, 2012

By Li-hsia Wang and Henry Abrons | San Francisco Chronicle, Letters
The California HealthCare Foundation’s report on Medi-Cal might lead Chronicle readers to believe that low-income residents feel secure in California’s safety net for health care.

Posted on Monday, June 18, 2012

By Silvia Casabianca | VOXXI News
An Argentinean medical doctor, Claudia Chaufan arrived in California as a single mom of a 7-year-old in 1997. She had been accepted to a one-year postgraduate training in science and medical communication. Destiny had it that she’d fall in love with a man that eventually became her husband, and with a cause that is now her passion.

Posted on Tuesday, May 29, 2012

By Chad Terhune | Los Angeles Times
Thousands of patients in California and across the nation who take expensive prescription drugs every month for cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and other ailments are facing sticker shock at the pharmacy.

Posted on Tuesday, February 21, 2012

By Lenny Potash | Labor Notes
Though it’s passed the legislature twice before, a bill to establish a single-payer universal health insurance system in California failed in the state senate in January.

Posted on Thursday, February 2, 2012

The Union (Grass Valley, Calif.)
The Campaign for a Healthy California on Wednesday denounced the failure of the California Senate to pass SB 810, the California Universal Care Act. The bill died when it remained two votes short of passage.

Posted on Friday, January 27, 2012

By David Gorn | California Healthline
The idea of a single-payer health care system in California stalled on the Senate floor yesterday, falling two votes short of passage.

Posted on Thursday, January 19, 2012

From the office of California State Senator Mark Leno
The Senate Appropriations Committee today approved the California Universal Health Care Act, authored by Senator Mark Leno (D-San Francisco). Senate Bill 810 guarantees all Californians comprehensive, universal health care while reducing the state’s ballooning health care costs and improving the quality of care and delivery of health services statewide.

Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Various sources
What follows is a partial listing of the media coverage given to parallel marches and rallies held on Monday, Jan. 9, in Sacramento and Los Angeles protesting the continuing injustices in U.S. health care and calling for universal, single-payer health reform. The protests were sponsored by the California Health Professional Student Alliance (CaHPSA), the Campaign for a Healthy California, Occupy LA, Occupy Sacramento, PNHP California and other groups. In Sacramento, the rally was immediately followed by student lobbying efforts in the state Capitol.

Posted on Thursday, January 5, 2012

By Nicholas Anton, M.D. | Letters, The Press Democrat (Santa Rosa, Calif.)
Competition in the health insurance market already exists for those less than 65 years old, and it has done nothing to lower costs. Private for-profit insurance companies do have “systemic inefficiencies” (15 percent to 20 percent overhead) “that contribute mightily to rising costs.” Those same insurance companies fought aggressively to keep the public option (read Medicare for those under 65) out of the Affordable Care Act knowing they couldn’t compete with it.

Posted on Tuesday, January 3, 2012

By Ken Saffier, M.D. | Letters, Contra Costa Times
Employees and businesses pay more for less coverage as the insurance industry seeks to maximize profits. Other developed countries cover their population by some form of social health insurance and have a competitive advantage. In the United States, we don't have the best health care system in the world. Even with so-called reform, it's expensive.

Posted on Monday, November 14, 2011

By Nicholas H. Anton | The Press Democrat (Santa Rosa, Calif.)
Occupy Wall Street emerged as a grass-roots campaign against excessive corporate wealth and political power. Having been bailed out by the U.S. government, large banks are making record profits and paying huge bonuses while lobbying for less regulation of the activities largely responsible for our country's financial collapse.

Posted on Friday, October 21, 2011

Dr. Robert Peck is the honorary chair of the Los Angeles Chapter of PNHP California. The following is a brief autobiography of a physician who has dedicated his life to patient advocacy.

Posted on Tuesday, June 21, 2011

By Katharine Mieszkowski | The Bay Citizen (San Francisco)
More than 100 protesters from community and labor groups rallied outside the Moscone Center in downtown San Francisco Thursday morning to call for the end of private health insurance and for "Medicare for all," while members of the America's Health Insurance Plans met at their national convention inside.

Posted on Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Health advocates to protest insurance companies’ high premiums, denial of care, and meddling in doctor-patient relationship

Posted on Tuesday, May 24, 2011

By Jim Steinberg and Mediha Fejzagic DiMartino | Contra Costa Times
Senate Bill 810, the California Universal Health Care Act introduced earlier this month by Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, would replace President Barack Obama's health care reform legislation with a more comprehensive system -- one its advocates say would cost everyone no more than what they already pay.

Posted on Thursday, May 19, 2011

By YESENIA AMARO | The Bellingham (Wash.) Herald
The national debate over health care can be summed up in a bill on the table in Sacramento.

Posted on Monday, May 9, 2011

Richard Quint, M.D. | Letters | San Francisco Chronicle
It should come as no surprise that some physicians are resorting to charging an annual fee in order to make ends meet, as the reimbursements we receive from both public and private insurance programs continue to trend downward while the amount of time spent on paperwork increases.

Posted on Thursday, May 5, 2011

Office of Sen. Mark Leno
The Senate Health Committee today approved the California Universal Health Care Act, authored by Senator Mark Leno (D-San Francisco). Senate Bill 810 guarantees all Californians comprehensive, universal health care while containing ballooning health care costs and improving the quality of care and delivery of health services statewide. The legislation passed with a 5-3 vote.

Posted on Friday, March 18, 2011

By Robert Speer | Chico (Calif.) News and Review
To understand why the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act has fallen short of what President Obama envisioned for health-care reform, consider the story of Billy Tauzin, as told by Dr. Jeff Lobosky.

Posted on Monday, January 31, 2011

California Nurses Association | Press Release
Despite the passage of national health care reform and widespread uproar in California over insurance industry pricing practices and other abuses, California’s largest private insurance companies continue to deny more than one-fourth of all claims, according to new findings released today by the California Nurses Association/National Nurses United.

Posted on Friday, January 7, 2011

By Duke Helfand | Los Angeles Times
Insurer says the increases result from fast-rising healthcare costs and other expenses resulting from new healthcare laws. The move comes less than a year after Anthem Blue Cross tried and failed to raise rates as much as 39%.

Posted on Thursday, October 14, 2010

Single-payer health insurance is not a new concept, though it’s one that’s not always understood. It gets lumped into the term “government health care” and branded as “socialized medicine” like the national systems in, for example, Canada and Great Britain. However, as Dr. Paul Hochfeld noted, the proposals for the U.S. call for publicly funded, privately delivered care.

Posted on Tuesday, October 5, 2010

By Carla Amurao | Santa Barbara Independent
Last night, the Mad as Hell Doctors, a group of activist physicians and health care providers, marched across town in an effort to raise awareness about universal health care and calling “Obamacare” a bare-minimum reform. From Anapamu Street to Canon Perdido, the sound of drums and cheers filled the air while passersby honked their horns and offered high fives and other plaudits.

Posted on Friday, September 24, 2010

By Henry Abrons | San Francisco Chronicle
Looking at health insurance, the situation is truly dire. There was a dramatic spike in the uninsured - 4.3 million more, to a record 50.7 million - in spite of the expansion of government health insurance rolls by nearly 6 million.

Posted on Monday, September 13, 2010

By Duke Helfand | Los Angeles Times
California regulators are seeking fines of up to $9.9 billion from health insurer PacifiCare over allegations that it repeatedly mismanaged medical claims, lost thousands of patient documents, failed to pay doctors what they were owed and ignored calls to fix the problems.

Posted on Wednesday, September 8, 2010

By now most of you have heard the disappointing news that our bill, SB 810, the California Universal Health Care Act, was held on the Assembly Floor on the last night of session, effectively killing the measure until next year. Over my strong objections, Assembly leadership decided to hold the bill. Although we are greatly disappointed, we are determined to come back even stronger next year.

Posted on Monday, August 9, 2010

By Claudia Chaufan, M.D. | Santa Cruz Sentinel
As Medicare celebrated its 45th anniversary July 30, the White House sent its present: a Deficit Commission, composed by some of the very folks who were unable, or unwilling, to see the $8 trillion housing bubble that brought the financial system to a halt. Nope. It's no joke: these folks are now at the forefront of the campaign to "save" Medicare and the budget.

Posted on Thursday, July 22, 2010

James G. Kahn, MD, MPH | Testimony before California Assembly Health Committee
My particular expertise in health system research is in billing and insurance-related administrative costs. My colleagues and I have demonstrated that as much as 1 dollar in seven that goes into a medical office is used to collect payment – for contracting, billing, copayment collection, and repeated appeals of claim denials. Overall, for health care funded through the private insurance system, fully 38 cents of each dollar goes to administration and profits, leaving only 62 cents for clinical care. 20 cents is avoidable administration – which would mainly disappear with single payer. This translates to billions of dollars that become available to pay for health care – more than $200 billion per year in the United States, and $30 billion in California.