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Health Net Awards $2 Million to Support 47 California Independent Physician Practices, Complementing Initiative from Department of Health Care Services

Date: 01/30/24

Grants will provide independent physician practices with funds to implement DHCS' Equity and Practice Transformation Directed Payment Program

Sacramento, Calif. (Jan. 30, 2024)Health Net, one of California's most experienced Medi-Cal managed care health plans and a wholly owned subsidiary of Centene Corporation (NYSE: CNC), announced $2 million in grants to 47 independent physician practices throughout California. Focused on increasing access to available funding from the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS), the grants will remove barriers that may limit physician practices' ability to take advantage of the Equity and Practice Transformation (EPT) Provider Direct Payment Program.

Independent physicians are a critical part of the healthcare delivery system, dedicating their careers to serving some of the state's most vulnerable residents. In their quest to provide quality healthcare, they encounter numerous challenges, such as securing sufficient staffing and resources. These are essential for applying for and effectively using available funds, which would enable them to undertake transformative activities in their practice. The grants provided by Health Net will aid these independent physician practices in their endeavors to keep pace with the rapidly changing demands of the healthcare industry.

Medicare and Medi-Cal President at Health Net, Martha Santana-Chin, stressed the importance of supporting physicians to enhance outcomes and advance health equity: "We recognize the critical contributions of these physicians to our communities, and our collaboration with DHCS is instrumental in enhancing physicians' capabilities, ensuring their success."

The distribution of grants was based on successful acceptance into the EPT program, with priority given to practices based on their Healthy Places Index® score and the number of interventions in their approved application. Recipients will use the funds to improve their practices, including implementation of electronic health records, care coordination, processes, infrastructure, and technology to improve access.

Physicians for a Healthy California (PHC), formerly known as the California Medical Association Foundation, has long supported physician practices and is an important partner for Health Net. Health Net provided grant application assistance, utilizing PHC personnel to help bridge gaps for practices who needed additional staff to apply for aid.

"We're honored to partner with Health Net on this vital program aimed at empowering independent physician practices as they implement the Department of Health Care Services Equity and Practice Transformation Directed Payment Program," said President & CEO at Physicians for a Healthy California, Lupe Alonzo-Diaz. "Health Net's grant program will enable physicians to overcome the barriers as they strive to provide the best possible care for their communities."

"I applaud Health Net and Physicians for a Healthy California in their strategic partnership to help physicians build sustainable practices with the potential to improve health outcomes for our most vulnerable residents," said Assemblymember Tina McKinnor, District 61. "The importance of their work cannot be understated. To ensure all Angelenos have access to quality healthcare, we must support our physicians so they can continue to serve and innovate."

Beyond the grants awarded, Health Net remains committed to supporting quality improvements in independent physician practices. As a trusted Medi-Cal partner in California, Health Net will continue collaborating with DHCS to transform Medi-Cal and address the state's evolving healthcare needs.

What Recipients are Saying

"With this funding from Health Net, we're enabled to strengthen our operations, improve quality of care and close gaps on disparities by increasing equity of care access and delivery for the populations we serve," said pediatricians at Burbank Pediatric Affiliates, Drs. Rashida Saifee and Mariya Zakiuddin. "If not for their assistance in the grant application process, we would not have been able to take advantage of this opportunity to improve our patient satisfaction and engagement. We are extremely thankful for their support."

"This grant will help us make strides to better integrate value-based systems of care across the entire continuum of care," said pediatrician at Dr. Toni Johnson-Chavis & Associates, Dr. Toni Johnson-Chavis. "Thanks to Health Net, we'll be able to greatly improve the level of care that we provide to more than 10,000 newborns, adolescents and young adults throughout the area of Compton."

Last Updated: 01/30/2024