Proactive Public Education & Coalition Development
CHA's Public Advocacy Program works to inform and educate the public about key financial and other critical issues impacting California's community hospitals and emergency rooms. In 2010, hospitals provided $12.5 billion of uncompensated care, stemming mostly from the underfunding of government programs like Medi-Cal and Medicare. Today, more than 50 percent of California’s community hospitals operate in the red.
Learn more. Get involved.
Become an advocate for your community hospital and ER. Together, we can protect these vital resources in your community.
Theresa Edison cares for patients every day, despite their
medical condition or ability to pay. She’s there when
her patients need her most. Hospital ERs are becoming
increasingly overcrowded. Help keep hospital services affordable
and accessible for all.
California’s emergency rooms handled more than 12 million patient
visits last year. They’re open 24/7 for everyone who enters
their doors, but it’s your personal story that counts. Please
tell us how your community hospital ER helped you, a family
member or a friend in your time of need.
Our son Michael is 47 years old, has Downs Syndrome, and lives
at home. We have a great primary care doctor, but lately
medical emergencies have made it necessary to go to the ER
STAT. The doctors and staff at our community hospital emergency
room are professional, helpful and reassuring. It is comforting
to me as an aging mom and caregiver to know that our hospital
ER is there when we need it. We don’t want it to close or to be
compromised in any way. We intend to be an advocate for keeping
our ER open!
My mother had been in pain for sometime in her abdomen and in
her back. Eventually, the pain became so bad that I took her to
St Mary’s emergency room. The helpful ER nurses and doctors
took my mother’s pain seriously and she got her first pain
relief in several months. She was referred to a doctor who did
some additional exploratory tests and discovered my mother had
intestinal cancer. Unfortunately, it had already metastasized
to her bones.
If we had not had an emergency room to go to where we received
great care, my mother would not have gotten the pain relief,
nor the critical diagnosis or treatment, she needed. St Mary’s
is full of heroes.
The sea of masks in my ER waiting room was pretty startling. I
was struck by the number of concerned faces looking at me,
especially since many had been waiting for 4 or 5 hours to be
seen. Their weariness was palpable. ER physicians and nurses
worked tirelessly throughout the day and night to provide care
to the record numbers of patients who were frightened by this
looming public health crisis. We were lucky however. We got to
see the relief on parents’ faces when we explained their child
did not have the H1N1/Swine Flu virus. We’re proud of the care
we’re able to provide to our patients and our communities when
they need us most.
Hospitals are working hard every day to keep emergency and other
important health care service available to you and your family.
Here’s how you can help protect those services today, tomorrow,
and into the future.
Consumers and Patients
Consumers and patients can help reduce ER overcrowding and wait
times by using primary care physicians and clinic services for
non-emergency health care needs. Share your
While continuing to provide high quality health care services to
those in need, hospitals need to continue to look for ways to
more effectively manage rising health care costs. Join Our
Working with local health care organizations, community leaders
can help find cost-effective, innovative health care solutions
that serve their communities and help address the needs of the
growing uninsured population. Subscribe to updates
Policymakers are urged to fund Medi-Cal at the highest level
available under federal law and ensure that health care programs
and services designed for California’s most vulnerable citizens
are not cut further. More Californians must not be put at
risk. Subscribe to updates