Four more legislators endorse initiatives to lower hospital prices, salaries

[Feb. 5, 2014] SACRAMENTOFour more California state legislators, this time from the Bay Area, are standing behind two initiatives to rein in healthcare costs and reduce excessive CEO and executive salaries in California hospitals.

Sen. Jim Beall (D-San Jose), Assemblyman Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco), Assemblyman Bill Quirk (D-Hayward), and Assemblyman Bob Wieckowski (D-Fremont) join four Southern California legislators who announced their support for the measures yesterday.

“When I hear about hospitals charging people $21 for an aspirin or $300 for crutches, I’m as outraged as the people in my district,” said Wieckowski. “It’s not right, it’s not fair, and these initiatives will put a stop to it.”

The two initiatives are sponsored by members of SEIU-United Healthcare Workers West, the state’s largest union of hospital and other healthcare workers. More information is available at www.HealthCareCosts2Much.org.

The initiatives are:

  • Charitable Hospital Executive Compensation Act of 2014: Prohibits nonprofit hospital executives in California from receiving more than $450,000 in annual compensation – the same amount received by the President of the United States. Many top executives in the state’s non-profit hospitals make more than a million dollars a year.
  • Fair Healthcare Pricing Act of 2014: Prohibits hospitals from charging more than 25 percent above the actual cost of providing patient care. On average, California hospitals charge 320 percent more than the actual cost of providing care in their facilities.

According to the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development, California hospitals subject to this ballot initiative charged $233.8 billion in 2012 – even though their operating expenses were only $54.5 billion.

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Paid for by Yes for a Healthy California, sponsored and major funding by Service Employees International Union, United Health Care Workers West. Additional major funding by State Council of Service Employees Issues Committee.


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