Policy Brief: Unsheltered Homeless in California – Justice System Involvement and Mental Illness

It is often assumed that a significant segment of the unsheltered homeless population in California has been involved with the criminal justice system in some way and/or is mentally ill. There are no statewide data to test these assumptions. This report estimates the number of unsheltered homeless individuals who have histories criminal justice system involvement …

Policy Brief: Adult Reentry Grant Program – Overview and Recommendations for Implementation of $50 million grant program administered by the Board of State and Community Corrections (BSCC)

The 2018-19 State Budget Act includes a $50 million appropriation to establish a new Adult Reentry Grant (ARG). This program provides significant resources to support the reentry of state individuals being released from prison who need housing and assistance in transitioning back to the community. This policy brief is intended to inform the discussion about …

Policy Brief: Collaborative Courts and Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) in California

This policy brief provides an overview of Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT) in California’s collaborative courts. MAT is the leading evidence-based method for treating addiction that involves both medication and behavioral health interventions. Medications for opioid use disorder include three pharmacologic agents approved by the Food and Drug Administration: methadone, buprenorphine and naltrexone.

Orange County Mental Health Services Act Audit. Review of Finances, Decision-making & Contracting. A report presented to the Orange County Board of Supervisors. October 2018.

In response to concerns about Orange County’s Mental Health Service Act (MHSA) program, the Orange County Board of Supervisors engaged California Health Policy Strategies, LLC (CalHPS) to undertake an analysis of current processes and to make recommendations for improvements. The CalHPS’s team conducted approximately 50 interviews over the past six months to gather data. Additionally, …

New Funding Opportunities for Reentry & Justice-Involved Individuals: Mental Health, Housing, and Diversion

This policy brief outlines new funding provided in the 2018-19 state budget for programs aimed at addressing the pressing mental health and homelessness crisis, and new options for diversion. Also referenced are funding opportunities in the 2016-2017 and 2017-18 Budget Act. These new programs create a unique opportunity for leveraging state and local resources that …

Medi-Cal Managed Care Plans: Diabetes Care HEDIS Measures – August 2018

Both Medi-Cal Managed Care plans and commercial plans are required to report common health outcome measures called HEDIS (Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set) scores.

California’s ACA Rates To Rise 8.7% Next Year

Premiums in California’s health insurance exchange will rise by an average of 8.7 percent next year, marking a return to more modest increases despite ongoing threats to the Affordable Care Act.

Policy Brief: Toward Universal Coverage: State Alternatives to the Federal Individual Mandate

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, signed into law at the end of 2017, included a provision that effectively eliminated the shared responsibility payment for individuals failing to maintain minimum essential coverage. Effective in 2019, the penalty associated with the shared responsibility payment is now reduced to $0.

Policy Brief: Whole Person Care Pilots Focusing on the Reentry Population: Overview of County Plans

The Whole Person Care (WPC) Pilot program is designed to coordinate health, behavioral health, and social services to improve the health outcomes of Medi-Cal beneficiaries who are high utilizers of the healthcare system. Collaborative leadership and systematic coordination among public and private entities is used to meet this goal. The WPC Pilot entities identify target …

Use of Psychotropic Drugs Soars in California Jails

Kaiser Health News Reporter Anna Gorman documents a 25% increase in the number of California jail inmates receiving psychotropic medications over the past five years. The article cites California Health Policy Strategies’s policy brief that reviewed state data from 45 counties. The article has appeared in the Washington Post, U.S. News and World Report, Kaiser …