Pasadena Clinic Offering Care to Healthy Families, Health Net Medi-Cal Managed Care Beneficiaries
The Pasadena Public Health Department has partnered with Health Net of California and the Associated Hispanic Physicians IPA to expand access to care for beneficiaries of Healthy Families and Health Net's Medi-Cal managed care plan, the Pasadena Star-News reports.
According to the Star-News, the number of Pasadena providers accepting Healthy Families beneficiaries declined by 36% between 1999 and 2001. By 2001, only 25 health care providers in the city accepted Healthy Families beneficiaries, forcing many to seek treatment farther away.
A similar decrease in the number of Medi-Cal managed care providers in the city occurred during the same period, according to Jennifer Pilapil, deputy director of Pasadena's Child Health and Disability Prevention program.
Under the partnership, the Pasadena Child Health Clinic has been added to the list of contract providers for Healthy Families and Health Net's Medi-Cal managed care plan. The clinic has sent out more than 2,000 letters to eligible families, notifying them of the expanded access.
Since the partnership was launched Nov. 1, 25 patients have signed up at the clinic, and four have come in for appointments, according to Barbara Farris, the clinic's manager.
Vicki Burkhalter, retired deputy director of CHDP, said as many as 200 patients left the clinic in 1998 and 1999 because the state was encouraging Medi-Cal beneficiaries to enroll in managed care plans and the clinic was not a Medi-Cal managed care provider.
"We're adapting ourselves for the good of the community," Takashi Wada, a health officer for the Pasadena PHD, said.
Assembly member Carol Liu (D-Pasadena) added, "It's needed, it's timely and it's really significant. This is very innovative and a very public-spirited partnership" (Groshong, Pasadena Star-News, 12/2).