SOURCE: California Association of Health Underwriters

October 26, 2006 17:08 ET

Speaker Fabian Núñez Joins Public and Private Health Experts to Discuss Solutions to California's Health Care Crisis

State Insurance Commissioner Candidate Steve Poizner, Lieutenant Governor Candidate Tom McClintock and State Senator George Runner Also Offer Insight About Health Care Reform at 10th Annual Health Care Symposium

LOS ANGELES, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- October 26, 2006 -- California Assembly Speaker Fabian Núñez and other political leaders strongly called on all sides of the health care debate to come to the table in 2007 and find workable solutions to the state's growing problem of affordable health coverage.

Speaker Núñez joined fellow elected officials and candidates at today's 10th Annual Health Care Symposium, held by the California Association of Health Underwriters (CAHU). CAHU convened more than 500 public and private health care leaders and industry representatives to discuss how they can work together in the creation of viable new health care policies to ensure that all Californians receive quality health care. As the largest statewide association working solely on behalf of health insurance professionals, CAHU represents more than 2,600 agents and brokers. Its members serve more than one million health care consumers throughout California.

"We must find consensus and bring the Legislature, Governor, health underwriters and other health care stakeholders to the table," Núñez said. "During this next year, we are going to resolve this matter."

Conference speakers suggested innovative approaches to improve health care access and affordability in California by focusing on areas in which the private insurance industry needs improvement and in which the government can provide greater coverage awareness and options.

Speakers emphasized the importance of the role of the agent in addressing the challenges facing California's complicated health care landscape.

In addition to Speaker Núñez, other speakers at the Health Symposium included State Senator and Lieutenant Governor candidate Tom McClintock; Insurance Commissioner candidate Steve Poizner; State Senator and Vice Chair of the Senate Health Committee George Runner; National Association of Health Underwriters President Dave Fear, RHU; and CAHU Vice President of Public Affairs Jeffrey R. Miles.

"The failings this past year of single-payer legislation due to partisan politics indicate the need for greater public-private collaboration in health care policy reform," said Jeffrey R. Miles, co-author of the CAHU Report which analyzed the impacts of a single-payer system in California. "More partnerships such as these can result in broad-based, bipartisan support and lasting health care reform."

Miles and other CAHU representatives indicated that the association has developed the framework for a "solutions package" of health care reforms that it intends to bring to the legislature during next year's session. The package emphasizes a combination of individual and employer insurance mandates, as well as maximizing participation in existing publicly funded health coverage options.

"In any policy reform that comes forward, I will fight to bring together key stakeholders that represent the many sides of the health care debate. I would like CAHU to have a seat at the table as your industry holds a key perspective that Sacramento and the State cannot and should not ignore," McClintock stated.

For more information about the California Association of Health Underwriters, please visit To arrange for a media interview or commentary, please call Forrest Beanum or Dan Witzling at (323) 466-3445.

Contact Information

    Forrest Beanum
    Dan Witzling
    (323) 466-3445