CHA News Article

DHCS to Update Stakeholders on Behavioral Health Integration in Cal MediConnect Plans

The California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) will conduct its next quarterly stakeholder update regarding behavioral health integration in Cal MediConnect plans on Nov. 5 from 1 p.m. to 1:50 p.m. (PT). DHCS will provide stakeholders with an update of behavioral health coordination efforts underway in each of the eight Cal MediConnect demonstration counties. Stakeholders will have the opportunity to ask questions and provide recommendations to DHCS.

Call-in number: (800) 779-1640
Passcode: 12158

Enrollment in Cal MediConnect is scheduled to begin no sooner than April 2014 in eight participating counties (Alameda, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego, Riverside and San Bernardino). Cal MediConnect health plans will be responsible for providing their members access to all needed behavioral health services (mental health and substance use disorder treatment) currently covered by Medicare and Medi-Cal.

All Medicare behavioral health services will be the primary responsibility of the Cal MediConnect plans, but Medi-Cal specialty mental health services and Drug Medi-Cal will remain the responsibility of county agencies (i.e., they will be “carved out”). Cal MediConnect plans and county agencies will be required to coordinate to ensure seamless access to care.

Each health plan must have a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with its county behavioral health agencies. These MOUs outline roles and responsibilities, patient information sharing and a “strategy for shared accountability.” Under this strategy, one quality measure each year of the demonstration relates to the plan-county coordination for behavioral health services. If the plan successfully achieves the measure, it will earn back a percentage of its capitation payment and then will be required to give a portion of the funds earned back to the county as an incentive payment.

For more information, visit