August 20, 2021
Weideman Group Weekly
Boosters on the Way
The Western States Vaccine Advisory Group is recommending that people with compromised immune systems receive a booster shot of the COVID-19 vaccine. And federal health officials are expected to recommend that all individuals receive a booster shot 8 months from their second dose of the vaccine. Guidance is forthcoming and we could see boosters being administered as soon as next month. 80% of Californians 18 years or older have now received at least their first dose of the COVID vaccine.
Hospital Capacity Strained
The surge in COVID-19 cases is once again straining the health delivery system with ICU beds filling across the state. Governor Newsom signed an executive order to provide flexibility in staffing and spacing in hospitals to ensure continued delivery of care. The order extends provisions that were expanded during the height of the pandemic, including allowing out-of-state workers to provide care in California.
Wildfire season continues to ravage California, with the Caldor Fire in El Dorado County reaching over 73,000 acres (0% contained) and dramatically affecting air quality from the Sacramento region to the Bay Area. Unfortunately, the Dixie Fire has now become the state’s second largest fire ever and has been burning for over a month. CalFire is currently battling 13 large wildfires in the state with more than 11,000 firefighters. The latest statewide fire summary can be found here.
Health Information Exchange
Weideman Group clients Blue Shield of California and Manifest MedEx CEOs Paul Markovich and Claudia Williams have been appointed to the Stakeholder Advisory Group for the implementation of the Health and Human Services Data Exchange Framework. The Stakeholder Advisory Group was recently established through budget bill AB 133 and is tasked with making recommendations to advance standards for health information exchange (HIE) in California to operationalize the new requirement that health care entities and government agencies must exchange health information in real time by December 31, 2024.
Ballots for the September 14th gubernatorial recall election are hitting mail boxes. Californians will have the chance to decide if Governor Newsom should be removed from office and who should replace him if he is removed. Polling shows the Governor is in a tight race. On the campaign trail, the Governor will be touting the July Jobs Report, which shows 114,400 new jobs created last month. The main candidates vying to replace Newsom include conservative radio talk show host Larry Elder, former San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer, 2018 Republican nominee for governor John Cox and former Olympian, reality TV star and transgender activist Caitlyn Jenner. We are expecting a wild ride over the next few weeks.