Behavioral Health Coordination

Cal MediConnect health plans will be required to provide 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 people have 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 this measure, it will earn back a percent 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.

Behavioral Health Policy and Implementation Documents

  • Click here to find the template MOU and behavioral health coordination standards

On February 20, 2014, the California Mental Health Directors Association (CMHDA), which represents the public mental health authorities in counties throughout California, shared a document titled “Principles for Access to Medi-Cal Mental Health Coverage”. Although not directly related to the Cal MediConnect effort, the principles contained in this document are very relevant to behavioral health coordination. Click here to access the document.

Stakeholder Work Group Archive

Click here to access materials from the Behavioral Health Integration stakeholder work group meetings.

Background Materials

  • Click here for documents highlighting lessons on integration from other states.
  • Click here for references that explore barriers and solutions to sharing patient health information for improved care.