News Release

Central Valley Congressman Honored for Efforts to Improve Access to Health Care Services
Rep. Dennis Cardoza Receives CHA Health Care Champion Award

MODESTO (August 24, 2010) – Rep. Dennis Cardoza (D-Merced) is being honored by California’s hospitals and the patients they serve for his leadership and dedicated commitment to improving patient access to health care services during the health care reform debate in Congress earlier this year.

Rep. Cardoza, who serves in his party’s leadership as an advocate for moderate Democrats, is the recipient of the Health Care Champion Award presented by the California Hospital Association (CHA). The award was presented during a special ceremony hosted by Doctors Medical Center in Modesto.

“Rep. Cardoza was a key negotiator during the health care reform debate, bringing sage advice at crucial parts of the debate,” said CHA President and CEO C. Duane Dauner. “From his vantage point as a member of the House Rules Committee and a leader of the moderate Blue Dog Coalition, Rep. Cardoza played a pivotal role in preventing as much as $3 billion in Medicare funds from being shifted from California hospitals to hospitals in other states.”

“From countless conference calls, literally at all hours of the day and night, to emails and strategy sessions, Rep. Cardoza made it clear that improving access to high quality, affordable care for all of his constituents was his number one priority,” Dauner added. “Because of Rep. Cardoza’s unwavering commitment, patients throughout the Central Valley and across the state can be assured that they will have access to vital health care services when they need it.”

Dauner noted that Rep. Cardoza’s district –which encompasses the northern San Joaquin Valley stretching from Stockton south to Fresno – has the highest number of uninsured in California.

In accepting the CHA award, Rep. Cardoza noted that providing access to quality health care has been a significant challenge in the district for many years, and is among the key reasons he initially ran for Congress in 2003.

“Having the opportunity to advocate the needs of my community as the health care reform legislation was developed will forever standout as one of the high points of my career in public service,” Rep. Cardoza stated. “I am grateful and humbled that I had such an opportunity. I am equally grateful and humbled by this award and all that it represents.”

As one of the largest health care trade associations in the nation, CHA represents more than 400 hospitals and health systems in California. The association provides its members with public policy development, issues management and legislative advocacy services at the state and federal levels. CHA has offices in Sacramento and Washington, D.C.