State senator plans to ask California medical board tough questions to protect Central Valley

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BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — Last week we told you about the fight the Dominguez family continues to battle for justice for Demi Dominguez and her son Malakhi De Leon, both of who died in 2019.

Doctors said she was fine and it was later determined that she had preeclampsia. Friday, the fight continues in front of the state senate and assembly members.

The family will be participating in the hearing virtually while hoping that Senator Melissa Hurtado will be bringing up the concerns they feel regarding the California State Medical Board.

Hurtado has been a member of the Senate Health Committee since she joined the state senate in 2018. She says healthcare has always been very important to her district, which spans from Fresno all the way down to Arvin, and includes Kern County. Last year the Dominguez family began a campaign to bring awareness to not only Demi and Malakhi’s case but also to the community of women and babies in Bakersfield who have lost their lives or been traumatically harmed by medical negligence.

Consumer Watchdog, a non-profit consumer advocacy organization, has been working closely with families like the Dominguez family and has drafted up a letter that will be presented at Friday’s hearing.

Hurtado says enough is enough and plans to ask tough questions to ensure health equity in the Central Valley.

“Our region and the City of LA have some of the highest maternal deaths in the state of California. We have a very big problem with the provider shortage here in the Central Valley, it’s the worst in the state, typically I think you are supposed to have about 70 doctors for every 100,000 citizens, here in the Central Valley that number is at 39 for every 100,000,” said Hurtado.

While Hurtado doesn’t plan to speak about the Dominguez case specifically, she does plan to ask questions that will protect citizens across the Central Valley.

“It all ties into what is the medical board doing what is the medical board not doing because it’s about patient protection at the end of the day and whatever it is we need to do to protect patients we need to start doing and taking action,” Hurtado said.

The Hearing begins this morning at 9:00 and is open to the public. If you’d like to watch and or participate in the meeting click here.

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