Posted on August 20, 2015

A newsletter to inform advocates for CSHCN about current issues and upcoming opportunities to express their opinions to policymakers and program administrators.

Please forward the newsletter and encourage your colleagues and constituents to join the Network.


Redesign Opponents Send Letter to Legislature, Group Meets with DHCS Director
Thirty-six organizations serving children with special health care needs signed on to an August 10 letter to the Senate Committee on Appropriations in support of AB 187 (Bonta), which would extend the carve-out of California Children's Services (CCS) from Medi-Cal managed care until January 2017. The bill is pending in the Legislature. The letter discusses five reasons to delay implementation of the state's proposed Whole Child Model (PDF) for CCS.

See the organizations that signed the letter (PDF).

Also see:


Special Legislative Session Addresses Medi-Cal Rates, In-Home Support Services
Several topics being addressed at a special legislative session could affect children with special health care needs, many of whom are insured through the state's Medi-Cal program. Governor Brown ordered the legislature to find "permanent and sustainable" revenues to prevent an anticipated $1.1 billion budget shortfall in the Medi-Cal program, and to find ways to fund In-Home Support Services and raise rates for Medi-Cal providers. California currently has one of the lowest reimbursements rates in the country, which contributes to a lack of service providers. The California Budget and Policy Center (CBPC) and the Insure the Uninsured Project (ITUP) have produced papers explaining the work of the special session. Read the CBPC report and the ITUP report.

Also see:

Upcoming Meetings

Medi-Cal Children's Health Advisory Panel
Thursday, September 10
1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Dial-in: 888-968-3517; Passcode: 8245294
Meeting materials will be posted on the MCHAP webpage. The 15-member panel advises the Department of Health Care Services on topics that affect children covered under Medi-Cal.Contact with questions or comments.

Webinars Canceled on Behavioral Health Treatment for Autism; Update on Transition Posted
The Department of Health Care Services has canceled upcoming webinars regarding Behavioral Health Treatment Services pending federal approval of the state's proposed plan. The Department has posted an explanation of the process and an update on transition of services on its website. Write to to sign up for email notifications.


Opinion: Community Solutions Essential for Whole Child Care
In a recent commentary in the Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, Edward L. Schor, MD, discusses the history of the concept of providing family-centered care that supports the whole child and family. He notes that it is unlikely that primary and specialty care providers can provide the breadth of services needed for whole child coverage, and also unlikely that health care financing alone would cover comprehensive support services or care coordination. The solution, he suggests, may be multi-agency collaboration at the community level. The Lucile Packard Foundation for Children's Health currently leads a learning collaborative of community coalitions to explore this approach. Read the commentary (PDF).

Foundation Seeks Writers for Policy Papers
The Lucile Packard Foundation for Children's Health is looking for individuals able to prepare background papers on policy-relevant topics related to care systems serving children with special needs. Topics might include care planning, coordinating care across systems, integrating services, quality assurance, Medi-Cal payment policies, etc. A background in public policy, child health, or health care is desirable, and a demonstrated ability to produce high-quality policy reports is required. Please send resumes to


Study: Integrating Mental Health Care with Primary Care Results in Better Outcomes
Researchers at UCLA have analyzed a wide body of research and concluded that children and adolescents who receive integrated care for mental and behavioral health issues within primary medical care fare better than those treated separately. Read more.



Information in Multiple Languages Regarding Health Insurance Marketplace, Medicaid
The Office of Minority Health of the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has released an index outlining the availability of its materials in a wide range of languages. The goal is to ensure that consumers have access to information about the health care marketplace and Medicaid and Medicare services.. See the index (PDF).


An Overview of Three Models of Family Peer Support
Wednesday, August 26
12 p.m. to 1 p.m. Pacific Time
Sponsored by Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
Exploration of three nationally known programs including Parent to Parent (P2P), which provides emotional and informational support to families of children with special health care needs.

CaPROMISE: A Study on Increasing Self-Sufficiency of Students with Disabilities on SSI, and Their Families
Thursday, August 27
10 a.m. Pacific Time
Sponsored by Children's Hospital of Los Angeles, USC University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities
Discussion of a research and evaluation program that will assess outcomes for some students receiving SSI, and their families, after receiving a coordinated set of services and supports.


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

To see past issues, visit the Network Newsletter Archive.