Jeremy Hay’s page one story today reminds us that community leaders have spent a lot of time talking about health care, but they don’t have much to show for the effort. Hay reported that one in five county residents now lacks health insurance.
Health care costs – and insurance premiums – continue to rise, which means fewer people can afford insurance. And, as the local economy slides into unknown territory, fewer employers provide health insurance.
Hay’s story – here – said there is some dispute about the accuracy of the new data (from the U.S. Census Bureau), but what is not in doubt is that we’re not making progress on a new model. Consider recent stories: Sonoma Valley Hospital continues to struggle to secure public support for a new hospital; Palm Drive Hospital in Sebastopol remains under bankruptcy protection; a shortage of physicians leaves many people scrambling to find a doctor; and more people are trying to get by without insurance.
All of us will share the costs of all this uncertainty.