Highlights from the Health Care Town Hall—Part 10—Medical Costs

  • [photo by Mel Weinstein]

    [photo by Mel Weinstein]

We are grateful to all 14 panelists for participating. B.J. Saidi, president of the Mountain Communities Chamber of Commerce, recorded the event. Patric Hedlund of The Mountain Enterprise coordinated and moderated the Town Hall. Gary Meyer was timekeeper. The TME Team is producing the transcripts and these summaries. Susan Templeton did a magnificant job of hosting the event at the Frazier Park Library.


Previously, we met panelists •Chief Brian Marshall of Kern County Fire Department •Myron Smith of Hall Ambulance Service •Brian Harris, CEO of Clinica Sierra Vista (CSV) •Brent Burket, M.D., of CSV in Lebec •Sharon Powell, Pine Mountain Health Center •Sarah Edwards, Ph.D., Psychotherapist •Anne Weber Burnaugh of the Family Resource Center •Militsa Brennan of South West Health Care District and the Mountain Communities Health Fair •Pharmacist Ty Stout of the El Tejon Pharmacy in Frazier Park •Kern County Fire Department Chief Steve Shoemaker •KCFD Captain Steve Freeland and Hall Ambulance managers •Darrell Stapley •Ryan Strange •Mark Corum.

In Summaries 3-9

Clinica Sierra Vista CEO Brian Harris told of changes to the CSV clinic in Lebec. He said he contracted with RadNet for expanded imaging services, but said an X-ray tech is also back at Lebec’s clinic. Some lab tests will also be done on-site in Lebec. Sharon Powell of Pine Mountain Health Center said PMHC is providing extra services, including house calls. Hall Ambulance and Kern County Fire Department spoke about integrating online medical records.

Residents told about their need for X-rays, dental care, skin cancer screening and pediatric care. Clinica’s CEO Brian Harris said CSV is covering pediatric care and apologized that front desk staff may have been undertrained about the clinic’s offerings. John and Sharon Powell of PMHC said they do infusions and hydrations on-site. Anne Weber Burnaugh explained that Dial-A-Ride has a medical van that will drive patients to doctor appointments on and off the hill.

In this Part 10: Brian Harris explains that Clinica Sierra Vista will provide services to patients regardless of insurance or income.


Kathy Weinstein, PMC:

My question is: How do people afford this? I have great insurance so I’m not worried for myself, but a lot of people in this room, if they showed up at your [Clinica Sierra Vista], would you see them if they had the right insurance, the wrong insurance or no insurance? I know…(please see below to view full stories and photographs)

Photo captions:

Audience members at the Health Care Town Hall challenged panelists with excellent questions on a wide range of issues from X-rays and cancer treatment to prescription drugs and transportation for seniors to reach medical care. In this section, the topic is a big one: the cost of medical care.

Kathy Weinstein, a retired nurse who lives in the Pine Mountain community, had pointed questions for Clinica Sierra Vista CEO Brian Harris about whether all her neighbors can afford care at the clinic.

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This is part of the October 12, 2018 online edition of The Mountain Enterprise.

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