Speaker Rendon Appoints Physical Therapist Union Leader to State Commission on Health Care Access

November 2017


SAN DIMAS, CA— California Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon has appointed Physical Therapist Debra Sung to the California Healthcare Workforce Policy Commission (CHWPC) as consumer representative to the 15-member advisory board which helps expand access to medical care and increase the number of primary care practitioners.

“I believe in universal access to health care,” said Sung. “And right now, we have a shortage of health care providers in many areas of the state. We also need more women and more minorities in health care.”

The CHWPC meets four times a year to provide expert guidance and application review to the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OSHPD) for awarding grants to residency and training programs from the state’s Song-Brown program for Family Medicine, Family Nurse Practitioner, Internal Medicine, OB/GYN, Pediatrics, Physician Assistant and Registered Nurse. Contracts are awarded to institutions that demonstrate an ability to place graduates in medically underserved areas; attract and admit members of minority groups; and locate programs in medically underserved areas. The California Health and Safety Code established the Song-Brown program in 1973.

“It’s so important to me that we engage young people in education about health and their bodies,” said Sung. “It has always bothered me as a health care provider when I have patients who are 25 or 50 years old and I’m telling them something basic about their bodies and it’s news to them. We have this beautiful and complex machine, our bodies, and many of us know so little about it.”

Debra Sung, PT, was the first president, now staff representative, for the United Therapists of Southern California (UTSC), a union representing physical, occupational and recreation therapists who work for Kaiser Permanente in Southern California, which formed in 2013 as an affiliate of the United Nurses Associations of California/Union of Health Care Professionals (UNAC/UHCP).

She was born in Phoenix, Arizona, graduated from South Dakota State University with a Bachelor’s in Psychology and subsequently received her Master’s in Physical Therapy from the University of Osteopathic Medicine and Health Sciences in Des Moines, Iowa. She now lives with her two children in San Dimas, CA. Sung will take her seat and swear an oath before the commission on November 28, the first day of the commission’s upcoming two-day meeting in Anaheim, CA.

“California consumers will be well represented by Debra Sung,” said UNAC/UHCP President Denise Duncan, RN. “She’s a leader and a dedicated therapist, endlessly energetic and enthusiastic, who takes joy in sharing knowledge and giving back to the community. We’re proud that Speaker Rendon chose her for this position.”


United Nurses Associations of California/Union of Health Care Professionals (UNAC/UHCP) represents over 30,000 registered nurses and other health care professionals, including optometrists; pharmacists; physical, occupational and speech therapists; case managers; nurse midwives; social workers; clinical lab scientists; physician assistants and nurse practitioners. UNAC/UHCP is affiliated with the National Union of Hospital and Health Care Employees and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO.

Media Contact: Jeff Rogers, Communications Specialist
Jeff.Rogers@unacuhcp.org | 909-263-7230