Health care

Small number enroll in health insurance exchange


Covered California, the state-run health insurance exchange established under the Affordable Care Act, released its first set of enrollment data today (Wed/13), providing an initial glimpse of how the program commonly known as Obamacare is working in practice in California.

From Oct. 1 until yesterday (Tue/12), a total of 59,000 enrollees completed applications and enrolled in health insurance plans under Covered California.Read more »

Mayor on local health care policy: “Everything is on the table”


A recent controversy has been brewing around San Francisco’s Health Care Security Ordinance, the 2006 legislation authored by then-Sup. Tom Ammiano that created Healthy San Francisco, the city’s medical services safety net program for the uninsured.Read more »

UCSF medical centers prepare for strike


On Tuesday morning at 4 a.m., a 48-hour strike will begin at University of California medical centers across the state.

The strike was called by the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Local 3299, a union representing more than 13,000 UC patient care technical workers.Read more »

Check, please

Top San Francisco restaurants facing exposure over health surcharge


San Francisco restaurants that have been cheating their customers and employees — charging diners for city-required healthcare coverage that they aren't fully providing to workers — will finally be exposed in the coming weeks, with some notable names in foodie circles among the likely culprits.Read more »

Chron workers protest health-care hikes


About half of the San Francisco Chronicle's editorial staff were packed into their third floor conference room last Wednesday night. And according to people present, it wasn't a news meeting or a press conference.

Angered over years of concessions, buyouts, lost pension, and sacrificed pay raises, the unionized reporters are organizing to fight steep increases in their health-care costs.Read more »

Two calls to investigate SF restaurant surcharges as consumer fraud


The surcharges that many San Francisco restaurants charge their customers – ostensibly to help cover their employee health care obligations, although in practice it has often just padded their profits – should be investigated by the District Attorney's Office as consumer fraud, according to Sup. David Campos and San Francisco's Civil Grand Jury, which recently issued a scathing report scrutinizing the practice.Read more »

The future of St. Luke's Hospital


The CPMC hospital-rebuild deal is on life support -- and some say, to use the harsh medical code, it's CTD. Stands for Circling the Drain.Read more »

Public teacher in a public hospital

An educator's trip to the ER reveals an unpleasant truth about our city's budget


By Sasha Cuttler

OPINION San Francisco Unified School District teachers and Department of Public Health nurses are going through difficult times. Despite years of service reductions, layoffs, and ceaseless budget pressures, teachers continue to educate San Francisco's young people while nurses care for the sick and injured.Read more »

Sutter's CPMC deal isn't healthy


At 10am on Friday, June 15, at the main chambers of the Board of Supervisors, the first of a series of public hearings will be held on specific aspects of the  development agreement governing the $1.9 billion Sutter Health/California Pacific Medical Center proposal to expand and centralize the giant health-care outfit’s health center by building a new 555 bed hospital at Geary and Van Ness. The deal involves demolishing the existing 220-bed hospital at St. Read more »

Progressives battle downtown over economic and political reforms


Battles between progressive members of the Board of Supervisors and downtown power brokers such as the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce defined City Hall politics for much of the last decade, until the new politics of “civility” and compromise took hold this year, a dynamic that has favored downtown interests. But now, a pair of important, high-profile issues headed to the full board on Tuesday has revived the old dynamic. And in both cases, wealthy interests are putting enormous pressure on the board.Read more »