Unique Partnership Joins Physicians, Health Care Executives, Business Leaders to Advocate for Better Health for Californians

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MemorialCare Health System Physicians Meet April 10-11 with State Legislators in Sacramento to Focus on Health Initiatives and Identify Collaborative Solutions at Annual Advocacy Days

The MemorialCare Physician Advocacy Days to educate state lawmakers on how their current and future decisions impact the health of California communities is set for April 10-11 in Sacramento. MemorialCare Health System—with hospitals in Los Angeles and Orange counties—is the only health system creating this unique partnership with community physicians. The goals are to advocate for health coverage for California’s 6.9 million uninsured, fair and equitable reimbursement, and to continue discussions among those making the law and the physicians, nurses, other clinicians and support staff who provide medical care and health services to Southland communities.

“This collaboration of community physicians, health system and hospital executives, and business leaders demonstrates that answers to the health care crisis statewide and nationally demand creating forums to discuss solutions,” explains Barry Arbuckle, Ph.D., president and CEO of MemorialCare Health System which includes Long Beach Memorial, Miller Children’s Hospital Long Beach, Community Hospital Long Beach, Orange Coast Memorial Medical Center in Fountain Valley and Saddleback Memorial Medical Center in Laguna Hills and San Clemente. “The conversations offer a collective voice to the legislators of our overall concerns, as individual community physicians and part of a larger system.” “MemorialCare believes collaboration can help resolve today’s health care crisis,” says Peter Mackler, government relations executive director. “Our well-rounded perspective on health care from a provider and hospital view allows physicians and executives to advocate for a balanced health care delivery system.”

MemorialCare Health System and its physician partners depend heavily on government funding to care for Medi-Cal patients, the uninsured and underinsured. “As economic conditions cause more Californians to lose employer health coverage, they increasingly rely on hospital emergency departments for primary care. This results in patients delaying health care until conditions worsen, creates backlogs in emergency departments and hospitals and adds significantly to health care costs,” adds Dr. Arbuckle, past California Hospital Association chairman. “These Advocacy days allow us to outline and discuss views of legislation under consideration.”

Community physicians, MemorialCare executives and business leaders will meet with State Assembly and Senate members; representatives from California Hospital Association, California Association of Physician Groups, California Department of Public Health; and others.