09-23-2021  3:04 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Cascadia Names New Chief Medical Officer

Dr. Bukhosi Dube will lead innovative “integrative health” model

How to Tell DEQ to Step Up Its Emissions Caps – And Go Further

Two activists created a website to inform the most climate-vulnerable on how to take action.

Washington Governor Inslee Asks Feds for Medical Staffing Help

Washington Gov. Jay Inlsee has asked the federal government for assistance staffing hospitals and long-term care facilities in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Oregon Dems Void Power-Sharing Redistricting Deal With GOP

The Democratic speaker of the Oregon House on Monday rescinded a deal she made with Republicans to share power as lawmakers redraw political boundaries and add an additional U.S. House seat for the state.

NEWS BRIEFS

Seattle Mayor Extends COVID Eviction Moratoriums

Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan said Tuesday the city's eviction moratoriums will remain in place through Jan. 15, 2022, rather than...

Oregon House and Senate Democrats Condemn Newberg School Staff Member's Racist Conduct and Use of Blackface

A staff member at Mabel Rush Elementary School in the Newberg School District attended work on Friday in blackface ...

New Plaque Honors Black Pioneer Merchant A.H. Francis

Throughout the mid-1800s, Francis was an active abolitionist, using his position to fight for Black people from western New York to...

IPAC Announces September 21 Kickoff of the Portland Peace Initiative

A new coalition intends to show how peace is possible in Portland ...

OHSU Offers Free COVID-19 Testing by Appointment at Portland Expo Center

This newest drive through testing site is open Monday through Friday. ...

Man refusing to wear mask disrupts school board meeting

WALLA WALLA, Wash. (AP) — Police were called to a Walla Walla School Board meeting on Tuesday when a man refused to wear a mask and disrupted the proceedings, officials said. The meeting Tuesday was halted and will resume in a virtual format next week, The Union-Bulletin...

Man fatally shot outside Bend nightclub, man arrested

BEND, Ore. (AP) — A Black man was shot and killed outside a bar by a white man in central Oregon, and prosecutors are working to determine whether race played a role in the incident, authorities said. Barry Washington Jr., 22, was shot early Sunday in downtown Bend, Oregon...

College Football Picks: Neutral sites for 2 ranked matchups

Last week, college football gave fans one of its tastiest, and unfortunately rare, treats when Auburn visited Penn State. Good teams. Great setting. Entertaining game. What college football is all about. This week, not so much. The...

Bazelak, Missouri make quick work of SE Missouri, 59-28

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Connor Bazelak squeezed a full day of production into one half Saturday as he led Missouri to a 59-28 victory over Southeast Missouri. Bazelak completed 21 of 30 passes for 346 yards and three touchdowns for the Tigers (2-1). “You...

OPINION

Homelessness, Houselessness in the Richest Country in the World: An Uncommon Logic

When and why did the United States of America chose the wealth of a few over the health, wealth, and well-being of so many ...

American Business Leaders Step Up to Fight Inequities in the South

With COVID-19 still an omnipresent concern and the country’s recovery still very much in jeopardy, individuals, families, and communities are struggling to deal with issues that have only been exacerbated by the pandemic. ...

Waters Statement on 20th Anniversary of September 11 Attacks

Twenty years ago today, our nation suffered devastating terrorist attacks on our soil and against our people that wholly and completely changed the world as we knew it. ...

Letter to the Editor: Reform the Recall

Any completely unqualified attention seeker with ,000 for the candidate‘s filing fee can be the largest state in the Union’s next governor ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

South Carolina's Confederate monument protection law upheld

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that a state law preventing anyone from moving a Confederate monument or changing the historical name of a street or building without the Legislature's permission is legal. But in the same ruling, the...

Diversity study: APSE's gender-hiring scores continue to lag

A diversity study found the Associated Press Sports Editors has improved in racial hiring but the independent national organization continues to lag when it comes to hiring women. The report card Wednesday from The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in...

Melvin Van Peebles, godfather of Black cinema, dies at 89

NEW YORK (AP) — Melvin Van Peebles, the groundbreaking filmmaker, playwright and musician whose work ushered in the “blaxploitation” wave of the 1970s and influenced filmmakers long after, has died. He was 89. In statement, his family said that Van Peebles, father of the...

ENTERTAINMENT

Done with delays, Academy movie museum rolls out red carpet

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The projectors are rolling. The ruby slippers are on. Many an Oscar sits glistening. The shark has been hanging, and waiting, for nearly a year. Nine years after it was announced, four years after its first projected open date, and five months since its...

Review: Jake Gyllenhaal carries claustrophobic ‘The Guilty’

An emergency dispatch center doesn’t exactly sound like the most visually exciting place to set an entire film. But the technical limitation of being imprisoned in a soulless office while high stakes action takes place off screen can be an inspired storytelling gimmick in the right hands, as it...

R. Kelly's rules protected him, prosecutors in sex trial say

NEW YORK (AP) — R. Kelly got away with sexually abusing underage victims for more than two decades by ruling his inner circle enablers with an iron fist, a prosecutor told jurors on Wednesday at the R&B singer’s sex-trafficking trial. “The defendant set rules, lots of...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Wildfire victims left with nothing get hope from donated RVs

QUINCY, Calif. (AP) — Clutching a bag full of duct tape and snacks, Woody Faircloth climbs aboard a motorhome...

Is the delta variant of the coronavirus worse for kids?

Is the delta variant of the coronavirus worse for kids? No, experts say there's no strong...

In German election, hunger strikers seek climate promises

BERLIN (AP) — After three-and-a-half weeks on a hunger strike, Henning Jeschke is frail and gaunt, but...

‘My whole life in a van’: Islanders flee Spanish volcano

TODOQUE, Canary Islands (AP) — A wall of lava up to 12 meters (40 feet) high bore down on a Spanish village...

In Israel, relatives of cable car survivor ask for privacy

TEL AVIV, Israel (AP) — The bitter custody battle over a six-year-old boy who survived a cable car crash in...

Tunisia’s Saied strengthens presidential powers in decrees

TUNIS, Tunisia (AP) — Tunisian President Kaïs Saied issued presidential decrees bolstering the already...

The Skanner News

The Oregon Health Authority has ambitious reform plans, and Monday night Portlanders can hear about them and weigh in.

The meeting is Monday, Oct. 10, from 6-8 p.m. at the University Place Hotel & Conference Center, 310 S.W. Lincoln St.

The health agency, together with the Oregon Health Policy Board, is winding down a tour of eight meetings across Oregon, and spokeswoman Patty Wentz, at left, says there are new ideas on the table.

"As we now are well aware health care costs are skyrocketing out of control, whether that's for businesses or families, or for the state," she says. "The meetings are designed to educate residents about the new vision for the Oregon Health Plan established by bipartisan legislation passed earlier this year."

Wentz says traditionally when the state has a revenue problem with its health care coverage, the state has three choices: they cut people from care; they reduce services, or they reduce provider rates.

"That's not working anymore," Wentz says. "The costs are too high we can't cut deep enough in those ways in order to keep the system sustainable."

Wentz says there have been some service reductions, but staff has come up with a different way of approaching this problem – looking at how to redesign the health care system to be more efficient, and bring both better care and lower costs.

"The governor and the legislature made a commitment to not cut anyone from care with the current revenue situation, no one is being removed from the Oregon Health Plan," Wentz says.

This year state lawmakers passed House Bill 3650, which mandates that the Oregon Health Plan must be refigured to "bring better care, better management of chronic illness, more preventive care, more health equity and reduced waste and inefficiency."

The legislation created local Coordinated Care Organizations to administer the delivery of physical, mental, addictions, oral and other health care to the more than 600,000 child and adult Oregonians served by the Oregon Health Plan.

"They would manage the health of the patient with one global budget, and locally they would decide how to best allocate those resources," Wentz says.

"With the Oregon Health Plan approximately 40 percent of our clients are also facing mental health issues but they have to deal with two separate systems, a mental health system and a physical health system -- they have to figure out how to coordinate that."

She adds that there is consensus on the fact that here are a lot of areas where the system isn't as effective or efficient as it could be.

"This high administrative burden in health care, there's not enough focus on prevention – because in our current system there's no incentive to focus on prevention, it's not how you get paid, you get paid for office visits," she says.

Wentz says there can be better management of chronic illness, which generates a lot of Oregon's health care bills.

"Eighty percent of our costs come from 20 percent of the patients and a lot of that is because of chronic care conditions that can be managed in a better way," Wentz says.

Monday's meeting will be followed by the final two in the tour: Eugene, Wednesday, Oct. 12; and Astoria on Thursday.

Local residents, health care professionals and businesses are urged to attend to help shape the proposed creation of CCOs in their community. Also at each meeting will be local innovators who have already begun the type of care coordination that would happen under the new organizations.

As required by HB 3650, a final proposal for such organizations will be delivered to the February 2012 Legislature by the Oregon Health Policy Board. Pending approval, the first CCO would launch in 2012.

If you are unable to attend a community meeting, you can offer feedback at www.health.oregon.gov .

For special accommodations, assistive hearing devices, sign language interpreters or large-print materials, please contact Ari Ettinger at the Oregon Health Authority at [email protected] or call 503-947-2340 or 877-398-9238 at least 48 hours before the meeting.

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