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FROM THIS EPISODE

As they draw up new policies under Obamacare, California insurance companies are cutting premiums by cutting back on the number of doctors and hospitals available to consumers. But consumers don’t always know that, and end up paying all the bills—all by themselves. Are Anthem Blue-Cross and other companies deceiving their customers?

Also, if LA County moves to institute Laura's Law, will court-ordered medication make up for the lack of beds for mentally ill people?

Banner Image Credit: Andrew Williams

More Insured, But Less Options 14 MIN, 20 SEC

Under Covered California, Obamacare has gone relatively smoothly. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t any problems. The non-profit Consumer Watchdog has filed suit against Anthem Blue-Cross, which insures more Californians than any company except Kaiser. While Anthem Blue-Cross offered policies at low cost, plaintiffs say they were never told about an expensive trade-off.

Guests:
Jerry Flanagan, Consumer Watchdog (@jerryflanagan)
Patrick Johnston, California Association of Health Plans (@calhealthplans)

Do Court-Ordered Mental Health Services Work? 12 MIN, 57 SEC

Laura’s Law was passed 12 years ago, named for a 19-year-old mental health worker shot by a patient in Nevada County. The core provision allows family members, treatment providers and law enforcement to seek court orders ordering mentally ill people to undergo treatment. So far, Nevada, Orange and San Francisco are the only counties to implement it. Tomorrow, the LA Supervisors may take a vote on adopting it here.

Guests:
Carla Jacobs, Treatment Advocacy Center
Dave Pilon, Mental Health America of Los Angeles

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