DENTAL CARE: Delta Awarded New Medi-Cal Contract
Delta Dental Plan of California, the state's chief Medi-Cal dental contractor, was one of four plans formally awarded a new state contract Tuesday to serve beneficiaries of the Medi-Cal dental program in Sacramento County called "Geographic Managed Care." Michael Kaufmann, Delta's senior vice president of state government programs, said, "The award of this new contract will allow Delta to offer something different from the traditional 'one-size, one-rate, fits-all approach.'" He said that "Delta will offer a fee-for-service option that will draw many more dentists to participate, thereby offering patients greater access, efficient service and a high standard of care." Delta expects to attract a large number of dentists because the providers will receive payment for each service they render. Greater access for patients will mean "guaranteed access to a dentist within three weeks for routine, non-emergency care or within 24 hours for urgent care," Kaufmann said.
CalWORKS And Healthy Families
The four plans will begin providing services on January 1. With regard to accountability, Robert Pierson, chief of the Department of Health Services Office of Medi-Cal Dental Services, said "our four new contractors will be held to a quarterly threshold in terms of their performance on quality care and preventive services for patients. If they fail to meet that threshold, the state will retain 7% of their payments." Under GMC, 95% of beneficiaries are in mandatory groups; the program is mandatory in Sacramento County for California Work Opportunity and Responsibility to Kids recipients and those in related CAlWORKS programs. Delta also was recently awarded a statewide contract to provide dental services to children under the new Healthy Families program. Click here to read past CHL coverage of Delta.