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ACA drives up ER visits at Doctors
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Double-digit growth in emergency room visits at Doctors Hospital of Manteca is a byproduct of the Affordable Care Act.

While reducing ER visits was one of the ACA goals, the dearth of physicians accepting new Medicare and Medi-Cal patients means thousands upon thousands of newly insured in Manteca, Ripon, and Lathrop have few options except to go to emergency rooms.

The patient load at the Manteca hospital is fairly typical for ERs in California. Sixty-one percent of patients are on Medicare, 22 percent on Medi-Cal, 1 percent are charity and the balance have private insurance.

There were 33,000 ER admissions in 2014, up 16 percent from 2013. Doctors Hospital Chief Executive Officer Nico Tejeda indicated the ER at the North Street facility is on track for another double digit gain in patient load during 2015.

“The good news is more people have insurance coverage while the bad news is there aren’t enough private physicians to see the new patient load,” Tejeda noted.

At the same time the rest of the hospital services are also seeing growth. There were 3,600 admissions last year, 3,400 surgeries, 700 deliveries, and 32,000 outpatient procedures.

The 73-bed hospital has about 500 workers with an annual payroll of $40.8 million — including $56.7 million in benefits — to make it the largest private sector employer in Manteca.

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Free Shred-It event April 25

Got documents that an identify thief would love to rifle through your blue or green Toter to find?

Then mark Saturday, April 25, on your calendar. That’s the date of the next City of Manteca Solid Waste Division’s free Shred-It event

It takes place from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at 210 E. Wetmore St.

Any papers brought in boxes pr bags will be shredded on site free of charge. Manteca Police will be on site to provide security.

The Earth Day event also includes free compost provided by Harvest Power on a first come, first served basis. Bring your own buckets and shovels.

All e-waste electronics will also be accepted free of charge.

The event is for Manteca residents only.