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Nurses back Proposition 45 on ballot
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The column by Sherri Stoddard, a Registered Nurse who serves on the California Nurses Association board that supports Proposition 45, was penned in favor of the ballot proposition that appeared on Tuesday’s opinion page. The headline, though, incorrectly referenced the nurses supporting Proposition 46. 

She delineated her support in part by noting: 

“As a Registered Nurse, I’ve seen patients pay the price for immorally high costs that health insurance companies charge for needed medical care. I’ve seen patients who own small businesses cry over whether they should leave the hospital against their doctor’s medical advice because they can’t afford to miss a day of work. They worry that their insurer will hike premiums to the point where they can’t afford to insure their families, let alone any employees. 

“Health insurance premiums in California have risen 185% since 2002 — five times faster than the rate of inflation. Price gouging is rampant in California because health insurance companies charge whatever they like. That’s why rates go up, not down. Prop 45 would change that, and that’s why health insurance companies are spending $37.5 million campaigning against it. They know Prop 45 will stop thievery and save tens of billions of dollars. 

“Federal law now requires all of us to buy health insurance. But California is one of the few states that does not guarantee that it must be affordable. Prop 45 creates that guarantee for the individuals and small businesses that must buy their own health insurance, and often suffer the most.”