Radio discussion: What’s next for millenials and the ACA?

[ Posted on July 2nd, 2015 by Center Communications | No Comments » ]

Center for Health Policy Research - 101202Young Americans are enrolling for health coverage under the ACA, but at a lower rate than estimated, Minnesota Public Radio reports. Center Director Gerald Kominski said one barrier is the “young invincibles” are usually first-time health insurance buyers who are unfamiliar with navigating plans, provider networks, deductibles. “The marketplace should not be this complicated.”

Host Kerri Miller said Gallup poll results show 30 percent of 19- to 25-year-olds were uninsured before the ACA, and that figure dropped by 6 percentage points after implementation of the law. Guest Benjamin Sommers of Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health said some young invincibles may have “tuned out” about enrolling because of the dueling political rhetoric surrounding the law, but the ACA now provides them a health safety net and access to negotiated price rates.

Listen to the story.

Rough road for state’s new managed-care health program

[ Posted on June 30th, 2015 by Center Communications | No Comments » ]


A new managed-care health program in California for vulnerable populations has lower-than expected enrollment, after facing pushback from consumer advocates, lack of agreement between federal and state governments and health plans, lack of readiness by participating counties, and other delays, according to Center Research Scientist Kathryn Kietzman in USC’s Reporting on Health.

The program, Cal MediConnect, is a pilot managed-care program for vulnerable consumers who receive both Medicare and Medi-Cal benefits, such as low-income seniors with chronic conditions and young people with severe disabilities. Launched in 2014, the program is meant to coordinate and better deliver medical, mental and long-term health services. Nationwide, 1.5 million people qualify for the federal demonstration programs, including nearly half a million in California.

As of June 1, about 123,000 of eligible Californians have enrolled in Cal MediConnect, far below expectation, said Kietzman. In six of seven counties with active enrollment, one-third have enrolled, nearly one-quarter cancelled their enrollment within the first month or two, and 44 percent opted out of the program and stayed with their current Medicare providers.

Read the entire story.

Research by Williams Institute’s Gary Gates cited in same-sex court decision

[ Posted on June 27th, 2015 by Center Communications | No Comments » ]

gary_gatesThe U.S. Supreme Court on Friday cited research by Gary Gates, Blachford-Cooper Distinguished Scholar and research director at the UCLA School of Law’s Williams Institute, in its decision legalizing same-sex marriage, according to a story on UCLA Newsroom. Today’s court decision legalizes same-sex marriage in all states.

In March, Gates filed an amicus brief in the landmark case, with evidence that same-sex couples are common through the country; are raising children and are more likely to be raising adopted and foster children; want to marry; and would be less economically vulnerable if they were able to marry. Williams Institute scholars have filed amicus briefs and served as expert witnesses for many same-sex marriage cases, including all cases before the Supreme Court, the story reports.

Gates gave a seminar at the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research June 17 on how he used California Health Interview Survey (CHIS) LGB data in his work. He predicted the outcome of the court case at the end of the seminar Q&A session.

“My mother says actions always speak louder than words” and the Supreme Court had many chances to stop states passing gay marriage laws, but didn’t, Gates said.

“My money would be on at a minimum that there will be a national right for same-sex couples to marry.”

Read the UCLA newsroom story. See the Center seminar video here.

CDC survey: More in U.S. have health insurance

[ Posted on June 24th, 2015 by Center Communications | No Comments » ]

NHIS_logo150The percentage of U.S. residents who lacked health insurance dropped from 14.4 percent of the population in 2013 to 11.5 percent of the population in 2014, a decline of 8.8 million people, according to a National Health Interview Survey report released Tuesday.

Estimates showed California adults ages 18 to 64 had a 16.7 percent uninsurance rate, compared to national rate of 16.3 percent.

States with the highest and lowest rates of uninsurance for all residents under 65 at time of interview in 2014 (the national rate for this group is 13.3%):


  • Alaska 19.4%
  • Texas 19.4%
  • Oklahoma 18.1%
  • Nevada 15.0%
  • Florida 15.3%
  • Mississippi 14.9%
  • North Carolina 14.8%
  • Arizona 14.6%


  • Hawaii 2.0%
  • Massachusetts 2.6%
  • District of Columbia 3.0%
  • Delaware 4.4%
  • Iowa 5.6%
  • Minnesota 5.7%
  • North Dakota 6.0%
  • Wisconsin 6.3%
  • Rhode Island 6.4%

Read the report.

Seminar today: The Importance of CHIS in LGBT Research and Data Collection with Gary Gates

[ Posted on June 17th, 2015 by Center Communications | No Comments » ]

gary_gatesThe California Health Interview Survey (CHIS) represents one of the largest ongoing population-based data collection efforts in the country that has included measurement of sexual orientation for more than a decade.

In today’s seminar, Gary Gates, the Blachford-Cooper Distinguished Scholar and research director at the UCLA Williams Institute, will demonstrate how CHIS has been used in research about the lesbian, gay, bisexual and (as of CHIS 2015) transgender community and the role it has played in helping to inform important policy debates about LGBT rights. He will also highlight new ways that CHIS is expanding its efforts to identity the LGBT population and provide leadership in advancing efforts to improve LGBT data collection.

Please join us for this exciting seminar about one of the few comprehensive data sources in the nation that looks at the health and well-being of sexual minorities.

Join us in person or via live-streaming webinar here:

What: “The Importance of CHIS in LGBT Research and Data Collection”

Who: Gary Gates, the Blachford-Cooper Distinguished Scholar and research director at the UCLA Williams Institute

When: Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Time: Noon – 1 p.m.

Where: 10960 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1550,    Los Angeles, CA 90024 [Map]

Thursday webcast: Pourat to discuss Medi-Cal waivers

[ Posted on June 9th, 2015 by Center Communications | No Comments » ]


Center Director of Research Nadereh Pourat will be part of a panel discussion on how Medi-Cal waivers have improved — and can further improve — the health care system Thursday, June 11, from 10 a.m.-noon in Sacramento.

Other health experts on the agenda include:

Panel 1: How Waivers Are Being Used To Promote System Improvement in Medicaid Framing

  • Alan Weil, Editor-In-Chief, Health Affairs (moderator for both panels)
  • Nadereh Pourat, Professor of Health Policy and Management, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health
  • Michael Kelley Gusmano, Research Scholar, The Hastings Center
  • Andrew Bindman, Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology & Biostatistics, University of California San Francisco

Panel 2: Preparing California for its Medi-Cal Waiver Renewal

  • Jennifer Kent, Director, California Department of Health Care Services
  • Brad Gilbert, CEO, Inland Empire Health Plan
  • Mitchell Katz, Director, Los Angeles County Department of Health Services
  • Anthony Wright, Executive Director, Health Access California
  • Mari Cantwell, Chief Deputy Director of Health Care Programs, California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS)

The journal Health Affairs, Blue Shield of California Foundation and the California HealthCare Foundation are presenting the event, “The California Medi-Cal Waiver: Perspectives on Promoting Health System Improvement in California.”

Attend in person or view the webcast by registering here.

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