list of California politicians, business leaders advocating patients’ rights
Los Angeles Business Journal
Title: Executive Director
Organization: Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights (formerly Californians for Quality Care)
Background: Pomona College graduate who started out as a community advocate and advocate for the homeless.. In late 1980s, turned to consumer advocacy as he joined Harvey Rosenfield’s group on the Proposition 103 auto insurance
initiative:., Got on health care track when Ralph Nader suggested the group look at universal health care during the great health care coverage debate of 1993-94… Named consumer educator of the year by the national Consumer Attorneys Association in 1998.
Role in Patient Rights Issue: Began in 1994 heading up Californians for Quality Care out of Rosenfield’s Santa Monica offices… Launched daily “HMO patient horror story” feature that grabbed national attention… Took ballot measure requiring right to sue to state ballot in 1996… Measure defeated, but many of its provisions adopted by state Legislature in 1999… Says state
legislative package is working as intended… Consumers getting disputes with HMOs resolved more quickly… 1996 ballot measure attracted national attention that Court says helped launch the federal patients’ rights legislation in 1997-98… Says national bill has more limitations on right to sue, but it still gives patients more leverage.