Santa Ana, Calif.—Orange County is seeking help from patients, providers, and non-profit organizations to address the community’s greatest health care needs. The effort is supported with $6.1 million in new community grants available to community groups with innovative health care solutions.
At its’ December meeting, Orange County’s health plan for low income and elderly residents, CalOptima, approved a package of items aimed at expanding access to health care, eliminating barriers to programs, and improving the delivery of mental and behavioral health services.
“Many people are struggling in Orange County, and we need to do better job of delivering care to patients in need,” said Supervisor Andrew Do, a member of the CalOptima Board of Directors and Chairman of the Board of Supervisors, who has organized a public Mental Health Forum on January 12. “It starts by listening to patients and providers – followed up with necessary support for community groups running programs that serve everyone in Orange County.”
40 Percent of CalOptima Members Skipped Dentist in Past Year
Among Orange County’s greatest health care challenges identified in the inaugural Member Health Needs Assessment championed by Supervisor Do:
- Dental Care: Nearly 40 percent of CalOptima members say that they have not visited a dentist in the past year, and cost is the primary reason.
- Language Barriers: Nearly one quarter of CalOptima members, 23.6 percent, indicated that they do not speak English well.
- Mental Health: One in four Orange County patients with CalOptima coverage who needed mental health services did not see a specialist. Nearly 40 percent of these patients indicated they did not know who to call and ask for help.
- Nutrition & Physical Activity: Nearly 17 percent of CalOptima patients report never engaging in physical activity, including more than one-fifth of children under five.
Grassroots Solutions: Community Organizations and Nonprofits
Non-profit and community organizations can apply for $6.1 million in community grants, including:
- $2.3 million for Mental Health Services
- $2 million for Dental Services
- $1.4 million for School-Based Collaborative Clinics
- $400,000 for Medi-Cal Outreach
CalOptima plans to issue a formal Request for Proposals this month, with responses due by January 2019. Grants are expected to be distributed in April 2019. Community organizations can apply at the CalOptima Community Grants page. For questions, please contact email@example.com.
“Orange County is committed to expanding access to healthcare, including mental and behavioral health services,” Supervisor Do said.
January 12: Orange County Mental Health Forum
In addition to new community grants, Supervisor Do will host a public forum on mental health care for patients, doctors, hospitals, nonprofits and other stakeholders. The January 12th forum is also a chance to introduce the community to newly-appointed Behavioral Health Director Jeff Nagel.
“Share your ideas for how we can improve access to health care in Orange County,” Supervisor Do said. “We’re listening.”
What: Mental Health Provider Forum
Date: Saturday, January 12, 2019
Time: 10:00AM to 12:00PM
Location: Mile Square Park – Freedom Hall
16801 Euclid Street, Fountain Valley
For more information, please call (714) 834-3110 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.