As California leads the fight to expand access to affordable, high-quality health care, this union-initiated ballot measure does exactly the opposite and punishes the residents of Palo Alto in the process. The true objective of this initiative appears to be nothing more than an SEIU – Workers West (UHW) effort to gain paying members and to distort facts about our organization in the process. If it passes, the Palo Alto community’s access to world-class health care will be unnecessarily jeopardized.
The measure’s fine print reveals that it does not actually limit prices charged to patients, but instead targets local hospitals, medical clinics and doctors, and forces them to pay rebates to insurance companies without any requirement that the rebates be passed on to consumers. Local government will be burdened with figuring out how to enforce this unconstitutional, confusing scheme, costing taxpayers’ money and potentially putting other public services at risk.
Palo Alto is home to Stanford Health Care, one of America’s leading health care providers. We are a proud member of the Palo Alto community and the only academic health system in the area that is discovering, developing, and delivering the latest treatments for the most challenging diseases. We are also the only Level 1 trauma center between San Francisco and San Jose. Our physicians, nurses, medical professionals, volunteers and community partners work as a team to ensure that everyone who needs care, regardless of their personal circumstances, gets it. We strongly oppose this thinly veiled power play by UHW leadership that jeopardizes high-quality health care, jobs, taxpayer dollars and health benefits. We are committed to protecting Palo Alto and every person’s right to quality care.