LA County's Healthcare System in Crisis

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Five years ago, President Clinton stood on the tarmac at Santa Monica airport and announced a one-billion-dollar federal rescue of Los Angeles County, which was threatened with bankruptcy by the cost of providing health care for three million uninsured people. Now the bailout money has run out, and the County is threatened again with closing facilities, laying off health workers and leaving sick patients untreated. Washington is reluctant to come to the rescue again with Sacramento rolling in extra cash and the County itself due for a tobacco-settlement windfall. As the deadline approaches at the end of this month, there's brinkmanship at all three levels of government. What are the prospects in this election year-with LA about to host the Democratic National Convention? And, even if the bailout's renewed-how long will it be 'til the next emergency? On Reporter's Notebook, how bad is it for insurance commissioner Chuck Quakenbush?



Warren Olney


Frances Anderton