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Many Medi-Cal Changes Underway: An Overview and the Impact on Children

The State of California has embarked on multiple efforts over the last few years to transform the way health care is delivered in the Medi-Cal program. These efforts illustrate Governor Newsom’s larger vision for reform, including those that hold promise to improve outcomes for children.

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Prioritizing Children and Families in California’s New Community Health Worker Benefit

The First 5 Center, First 5 Association, and our partners listed below recently submitted stakeholder comments to inform California’s definition of the new Community Health Workers benefit.

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California will invest in dyadic care – and show its commitment to family wellness

Among the many important investments in this year’s state budget, California’s new dyadic care benefit in the Medi-Cal program is particularly significant.

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The history of public health programming for Black infants and families in California and the birth disparities that persist

In California, Black women are roughly four times more likely to die from pregnancy-related causes than women in all other racial/ethnic groups. California’s Black infants are almost three times more likely to die than white infants, regardless of the mother’s education and income. Indeed, a Black woman with an advanced degree is more likely to lose her baby than a white woman with less than an eighth-grade education.

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New Program Extends Medi-Cal Coverage to Individuals Diagnosed With a Maternal Mental Health Condition

Effective August 1st, individuals receiving Medi-Cal who have been diagnosed with a maternal mental health condition, including postpartum depression (PPD), may qualify for an extension of coverage for up to a year.

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Orange County Perinatal Mental Health Toolkit Provides Model for Other Counties

While many women experience some mild mood changes after the birth of a child, commonly known as the “baby blues,” in California 1 in 6 women experience more significant symptoms of depression or anxiety. Orange County’s perinatal mental health toolkit is intended to provide educational, screening, treatment, and referral resources, the toolkit helps providers identify at-risk parents who may benefit from preventive services such as mentorship, classes, home visiting, and support groups.