The debate on health care in this country and how it needs to be reformed often centers around the issue of uninsurance. But getting insured in order to afford care is only half the battle; getting good quality care is also important.
There is an effort under way right now in California to expand and improve the state’s health system. While the first image that comes to mind when people think of the Golden State is sunshine, surfboards and muscle beach, the average Californian may not be that healthy.
A late 2007 study shows what’s at stake: a state agency has found that none of California’s 8 largest HMO plans ensure that their 12 million members are receiving sufficient preventive care, which can reduce future costs. For example, almost one-third of middle-aged women on these plans hadn’t had a mammogram to screen for breast cancer in the last two years, and almost half of plan members older than 50 hadn’t been tested for colorectal cancer. Medical care standards proscribe these tests for 100% of adults over 50.