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Six California Cities: Which Healthcare Economies Are Thriving?

Business Wire

California’s sprawling size and the diversity of its regional health care systems result in care that is organized, delivered, and financed differently throughout the state.

As part of its continuing effort to explore this variation, the California HealthCare Foundation (CHCF) published six regional market reports, providing a first-time, in-depth analysis of six distinct California health care economies. The goal is to better understand the market dynamics for each region studied (the San Francisco Bay Area, Sacramento, Fresno, Los Angeles, Riverside/San Bernardino, and San Diego). Topics include the supply and organization of hospitals, physicians, and other providers; and the accessibility of services for low-income residents — of particular importance during the economic downturn.

“This project provides a detailed picture of each local health care system and identifies common themes and emerging issues that influence how Californians receive health care now and in the future,” said Marian Mulkey, M.P.H., M.P.P., CHCF senior program officer.

The reports are the result of a 15-month partnership with the Center for Studying Health System Change (HSC). HSC research teams conducted site visits, interviewing nearly 50 health care leaders in each region, including health plan, hospital, and medical group representatives, major employers, benefit consultants, insurance brokers, community clinic administrators, consumer advocates, and state and local policymakers.

“The contrasts in how local health systems are organized and their responses to challenges, especially caring for uninsured people, are quite striking,” said Debra A. Draper, Ph.D., an HSC senior fellow who coordinated the project.

Some of the regional findings are highlighted in the slideshow.

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