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Profile: Dr. Jim Marcin, Pediatric Telemedicine Program,
UC Davis Children's Hospital

Dr. James Marcin is helping fulfill the promise of telemedicine for children who urgently need specialized care. He imagines a future in which virtual medicine could be used to “realize the vision of a medical home.” Read more.


Growing Trend: Primary Care Clinics for Children with Special Health Care Needs
Obtaining primary care is a challenge for many children with special health care needs, as general pediatricians may not be equipped to, or interested in, handling the complicated nature of their health needs. As a result, primary care clinics focused on caring for children with complex needs are popping up around the country. There currently are 11 such clinics in California alone. Representatives of these clinics were convened for the first time on Feb. 28 at the Lucile Packard Foundation for Children’s Health. Topics of discussion included the similarities and differences in clinic structure, workflow, children served and financial models. The group shared challenges and barriers and brainstormed about the future of complex care in California. Read more.

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If you’d like to read additional member profiles and catch up on information about policy and resources, you’ll find links to all earlier Network newsletters here.


State to Explore Changes to California Children’s Services (CCS) Program
The Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) is starting a stakeholder process to look at modifications to the California Children's Service (CCS) program, according to DHCS Director Toby Douglas. Douglas, who spoke Feb. 24 at a hearing of the Assembly Subcommittee on Health and Human Services, said no decisions have been made, but the state will examine alternatives to the program, which is scheduled to “sunset” at the end of 2015. Read more.

Issue Brief: Health Homes Hold Potential for Children with Special Needs
A new report from Children Now assesses how child-centered health homes could improve care coordination for California children with special health care needs. A health home – a term that is used in a variety of ways – in this context means a team-based model for delivering a comprehensive range of health care services in a personalized and coordinated manner, including medical, dental, mental health, and support services. The Affordable Care Act offers an option for states to design health homes for people with chronic conditions, with the federal government absorbing 90% of the costs for the first two years. To receive updates on health homes and learn about related advocacy opportunities, contact Ben Rubin at

Managed Care and Children with Special Health Care Needs: Approaches from Three States
For families of children with special health care needs, depending on managed care organizations can be worrisome, especially when their children require expensive and/or unusual services. A new study by the National Academy for State Health Policy, supported by the Lucile Packard Foundation for Children’s Health, examines the approaches taken by three states, including California, to trying to ensure that children with special health care needs are known to their managed care organization and that their needs are assessed so that appropriate care can be provided. Read the report and recommended best practices and a related blog post.


Nearly 10 percent of children in California public schools receive special education services, according to 2013 data, and many of these children have special health care needs. The total number is similar to previous years, but substantial diversity exists among counties, ranging from 5.5% to 17.6% in 2013. See the data on

ACA Enrollment Deadline Coming Up – March 31; New Fact Sheets Available
March 31 is the deadline for enrolling in insurance coverage under the Affordable Care Act. The American Association on Health and Disability (AAHD) has released three new fact sheets to support those helping to enroll people with disabilities in ACA-related plans, Getting and Using Health Plan Evidence of Coverage, Using Health Plan Customer Service and Rehabilitation and Habilitation Services and Devices. An earlier fact sheet, Comparing Health Plans' Benefits and Coverage Summaries, also is available, along with a list of upcoming fact sheets and a "Guide to Disability for Healthcare Insurance Marketplace Navigators."

Ensuring Coverage for All Californians
While the Affordable Care Act has already expanded coverage for millions of Californians, two to three million residents are projected to remain uninsured, the majority from communities of color. The California Pan-Ethnic Health Network and the California Immigrant Policy Center will host a series of convenings entitled Finishing the Job: Ensuring Coverage for All Californians, which will focus on the remaining uninsured, including coverage for immigrant families and efforts to enroll all those who are eligible. Convenings will be held throughout the state from April 1-9. Learn more and register.


Children’s Hospice and Palliative Care Coalition (CHPCC) Annual Public Policy and Education Day
April 7, California State Capitol
For more information or to RSVP, contact Jennifer Ramirez.

Disability Policy Seminar
April 15-17
Washington, DC
The Arc of the United States
This annual gathering will feature public policy experts, advocates and Congressional staff discussing current key policies. Attendees will meet with their Congressional delegations. Learn more.

Children’s Regional Integrated Service System (CRISS) Annual Conference: “The Devil is in the Details: Coordinated Care Under Covered California”
May 9, 2014
Oakland, CA
Save the Date: Details to Come.


Learning Disabilities in the US
The National Center for Learning Disabilities has published a report highlighting the “State of Learning Disabilities 2014.” The report shows that 2.4 million students in U.S. public schools have a learning disability. Read more.

Let us know what's happening with your organization or family. E-mail Network Manager Janis Connallon at with your news or updates. Newsletter Editor: Eileen Walsh