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After California voters soundly rejected several proposals to mitigate the state's staggering $21 billion budget deficit, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is suggesting unheard-of cutbacks in health and social programs. This time, the discussion isn't just about cutting money from the Healthy Families subsidized health insurance program, it's about scrapping it altogether.

Barbara Feder Ostrov's picture

The Center for Healthcare Decisions has given itself a tough task. Its staff tries to bring together people from different economic brackets and get them to talk in very specific terms about all facets of health care.

William Heisel's picture

Matthew William Wasserman of Katy, Texas, found a unique way to treat a female patient's back: "a sensory examination of the genital area."

That was according to the Texas Medical Board.

Now, Wasserman had only been out of medical residency for three years when this happened, and he did not have a lot of women in his graduating class at Baylor Medical College. Still, one has to assume that most doctors know the basics of anatomy, male or female.

William Heisel's picture

California journalists, you know how the state's special election is going to turn out. Late on election night, all of the budget-related propositions - save for the one regarding lawmaker pay raises - are failing miserably. Even Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger skipped town.

So, now that ticked-off voters are turning down the stopgap budget fix proposed by Schwarzenegger, the question in the coming days will be: what happens to health care?

Barbara Feder Ostrov's picture

Anyone who has driven the highways around Los Angeles has seen the giant billboards with a chubby man stuffing a giant piece of cake in his mouth next to the words "Dieting Sucks." It's a promo for a plastic surgery practice that promises to use Lap-band surgery to cure overweight patients.

William Heisel's picture
Calixto Orantes, right, his son Julio, 17, center, and wife Edel, left, play with their new puppies at their home.
This story was produced as part of a larger project led by Suzanne Bohan and Sandy Kleffman, participants in the  Other stories in this series include:
SuzB's picture
Dennis Terry takes inventory at the Mandela Food Cooperative on Seventh Street in west Oakland, Calif., on Wednesday.
This story was produced as part of a larger project led by Suzanne Bohan and Sandy Kleffman, participants in the  Other stories in this series include:
SuzB's picture
The Rev. Jeffrey M. Parker prays during a service at Community Reformed Church in the Sobrante Park neighborhood.
This story was produced as part of a larger project led by Suzanne Bohan and Sandy Kleffman, participants in the  Other stories in this series include:
SuzB's picture
John Fitzpatrick awaits his appointment during his monthly asthma clinic at Children's Hospital Oakland in Oakland, Calif., on T
This story was produced as part of a larger project led by Suzanne Bohan and Sandy Kleffman, participants in the  Other stories in this series include:
SuzB's picture

Anyone who has helped a friend or family member undergo cancer treatment knows the fear and frustration that can consume a patient's life. There are new, experimental treatments being touted every year, many of them only available outside of the United States.

William Heisel's picture

Journalist. Santa Monica City Councilman. Music Producer. Entrepreneur. Bobby Shriver has worn a lot of hats, some of them simultaneously. Now, while working as a councilman, he runs (RED), a company he created with Bono to fund the purchase and distribution of medications to fight HIV and AIDS in Africa. I reached him at his office in Santa Monica.

Here is a recap of our conversation. It has been edited for space and clarity.

William Heisel's picture

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