CA Won’t Keep up With Everyone Eligible for Health Insurance, Says Senator

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.


Can our medical system keep up with the five million additional Californians eligible and required to buy health insurance next year?  California State Senator Ed Hernandez says it won’t and is proposing nurse practitioners, optometrists and pharmacists should be able to diagnose, treat and manage some illnesses for the growing number of people eligible for health insurance through Obama’s Affordable Care Act.

In a Google+ hangout with FOX40, Hernandez said that with, “the current workforce we have now, we are barely meeting the demand for primary care physicians.” To add to the problem, he says one third of physicians in this state are over 65.

He said his critics believe his proposals will create a two-tier system, but Hernandez said  we already have one. He said, “We have a distribution problem where few of them [doctors] go to rural or more importantly intercity or communitites of color.”

A majority (5 vs. 1 with one undecided vote) of Google+ hangout viewers supported his proposals. Anthony White was one who opposed it, and  questioned who would oversee those with expanded medical roles. Hernandez said, “There will and always needs to be accountability,” and said each group would be held liable by their respective boards.

Opposing groups argue the groups simply aren’t trained enough. Viewer Kempton Lam was supportive of the senator’s proposal but also questioned if there was a risk of the medical personal not being qualified. Hernandez says this is not the case and says non-medical doctors like optometrists, pediatrist dentists, pharmacists, nurse practitioners all have four years of an undergrad degree in some type of science, four years of postgraduate work and independent boards that oversee them to ensure that public safety is a priority.

He added, “what we’re going to allow them to do is within their training.”

To view the full hangout with State Senator Ed Hernandez, watch the video on FOX40′s YouTube page.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s


  • Bret_V

    ~ I don’t think an optometrist, dentist, or any other non medical practitioner would have practiced enough medicine to remember their undergraduate studies. A person that does not use their knowledge and skills, will after time loose their skills.

    How many politicians remember why people chose to elect them, or remember what its like to work and live on an average families pay? Obviously not many, or our many people would not be suffering due the affluent classes increasing greed.

    Who would go to an optician, and ask for a colonoscopy or pap smear? I certainly wouldn’t, and if I had to, I would be seeking a second opinion the next day. So the question is, do we wish to make more work and provide poor care. Or do we want to find a system that’s more stream line and effective.

  • Bret_V

    ~ As for the 1/3 of doctors over 60, maybe we should rethink closing schools and making education affordable to everyone, so that we have more doctors in the pudding mix of our system. Closing them down, and making education more expensive to profit from, only reduces the means and causes for good health, science, and the functionality of our societies survival. Come on people, one step forward and three steps back is not progress, it’s genocide.

    To proceed in a progressive way, one must create a proper perspective, and then a better day by laying the foundation for it.

    Have a great day and better future, whether you enjoy the journey or not, it is what you make of it..
    ~ Create joy with your attitude, beauty with your mind, and last but not least, more love with intelligent and compassionate actions.