HEALTHY FAMILIES: Media Blitz Begins Today
Today the state kicks off its "$192 million publicity blitz showcasing the long-delayed program aimed at families too rich or too proud to take Medi-Cal but too poor to afford the premiums of their employers' health plans." Up and running since last Wednesday, Healthy Families is already getting the word out with the help of community coalitions, the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin reports. Julie Wilson, vice president of business services at Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center, a member of the Pomona Clinic Coalition, said: "I think the heightened awareness of children's health is a good thing." But she added, "Getting it started is going to be a bureaucratic issue." The Pomona coalition and other similar groups are "training staffers on how to help families apply for the program."
Long Way To Go
As of last week, the Daily Bulletin reports, "the state ha[d] mailed out 10,000 applications to interested parties" but had "actually signed up fewer than 500 of the 400,000 children who are eligible" (Monroe, 7/3). The campaign starting today includes billboard, TV and transit ads. The Healthy Families toll-free line -- (888) 747-1222 -- features live operator assistance in 10 languages. View the Healthy Families Website at http://HealthyFamilies.ca.gov/. Or click here for past California Healthline coverage of the Healthy Families program.