There are big changes coming to California’s health care landscape in 2014 and employees at Alameda Health Consortium and Community Health Center Network are beginning to piece together how these changes will affect our communities. Currently, our health centers see 42,125 Health Program of Alameda County (HealthPAC) members. These members are part of a program launched by Alameda County for uninsured Alameda County residents.

With the Affordable Care Act coverage expansion in 2014, we anticipate that 13,829 community health center HealthPAC members will become eligible for Medi-Cal and will be in managed care, either enrolled in Alameda Alliance for Health (AAH) or Anthem Blue Cross (BC)*, and they will be served the current way we serve our Managed Care Medi-Cal members.

Roughly 10%, or 4,402, of our current HealthPAC members will be eligible to enroll in a health plan offered through the Covered California Exchange. This means that, although they will have to purchase health insurance for themselves, they will be eligible for premium government subsidies which will help to offset the cost. These members will be able to purchase coverage through an HMO and their choices will include AAH and BC with whom we already do business. We do have concerns about the affordability of this health care coverage for our patients so we will continue to work on addressing any cost issues that arise.

That still leaves over 23,000 community health center HealthPAC members who will be ineligible for either of the expanded health care coverage options mentioned above. We are working with the Alameda County to ensure that there will continue to be a county funding program to support care for all of these people who will be left without coverage.

There will be efforts to make the transition of our HealthPAC members to Medi-Cal and Covered California as smooth as possible. As we continue to unearth the upcoming health care landscape, we will keep you abreast of each change and what it means for the health centers and our members.

*Note: Starting on January 1, 2024, our Medi-Cal patients in Alameda County will be assigned to a single health insurance plan through Alameda Alliance for Health.