Healthcare Roundup—Commission unveils $3B plan to address California’s physician shortage

primary care
A group spearheaded by healthcare and business leaders in California has a plan to address the state's doctor shortage, plus more healthcare news. (Getty/Milkos)

Commission outlines $3B plan to address California’s physician shortage 

The California Future Health Workforce Commission is calling for a $3 billion plan to ensure the state has enough clinicians to meet its needs, especially as newly instated Gov. Gavin Newsom looks to expand access significantly. 

The state will need to invest in additional opportunities for medical education and enhanced training programs for physicians as well as allow nurse practitioners to work at the top of their licenses to address gaps, the commission said. 

The commission was formed by healthcare, education and business leaders in California and is planning to formally propose its plan to Newsom and other state officials in the near future. 

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“In short, we know that California will be facing a tremendous workforce gap in the healthcare arena and we can’t just push this off,” Janet Napolitano, president of the University of California and the commission’s co-chair, said. (Los Angeles Times

Partners CEO’s exit raises questions about need to further integrate founding systems 

While David Torchiana’s exit as CEO of Partners HealthCare doesn’t indicate a breakup between Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Health is looming, it does raise questions about whether the two should be tied together more closely. 

Mass General and Brigham have traditionally operated with a high level of independence since they came together as founding members of Partners, but that separation can make leading the combined system tough, experts said. 

James Roosevelt, Jr., a healthcare lawyer and former CEO of Tufts Health Plan, said Torchiana’s exit will leave the system’s board to weigh these concerns. 

“The board needs to decide whether their articulated vision of an integrated system is what they want the new leader to pursue, or whether the development of parallel strong institutions which compete with each other is what they want a leader to pursue—because it is that tension that I think has made it such a difficult job,” Roosevelt said. (Boston Globe

University of Maryland hospital employee in critical condition after shooting 

A 24-year-old who works at the University of Maryland School of Medicine was shot Monday at the university’s Baltimore hospital and is in critical, but stable, condition. 

The man, who was not identified, was shot in the face and buttocks at about 7 a.m. Monday, police said. Jamar Haughton, 26, has been charged in the case, and investigators believe he and the victim knew one another. 

Physicians are hopeful that the victim, who is on life support, will recover. 

“I’ve done way too many of these things with you guys,” Thomas Scalea, M.D., head of the hospital’s trauma center, told reporters on Monday. “This one is as close as it’s ever been.” (Baltimore Sun

Washington measles outbreak continues to grow, first case reported in an adult over 30 

A Vancouver, Washington-area measles outbreak has reached nearly 50 cases with the first infection reported in an adult over age 30, health officials said.

The case in that adult marks the oldest person in the outbreak to be diagnosed with measles, and Oregon health officials said one other adult has been confirmed to be infected. A total of 49 cases have been confirmed so far, and an additional nine people are awaiting testing. 

Public health officials are urging anyone who has not yet been vaccinated for measles to schedule an inoculation as soon as possible. (The Oregonian