L.A. Care Health Plan to Expand Provider-Clinic Connections

LOS ANGELES — Since the start of the project 18 months ago, L.A. Care Health Plan, the nation’s largest public health plan, has counted 15,000 electronic consultations between primary care doctors and specialists, connecting 1,300 providers in 108 community clinics and health centers across the county, the community health plan announced last week. The web-based system allows primary care doctors and specialists to share health information and discuss patient care. This reduces patient treatment times, improves clinical quality and lowers costs. This year, the program will be expanded to 76 additional sites to serve one million low-income Los Angelenos, the plan announced last week. “This represents an exciting milestone in the effective delivery of specialty services to our patients,” said Dr. Paul Giboney, director of specialty care for the Los Angeles Department of Health Services (DHS). L.A. Care Health Plan is a public entity and community-accountable health plan serving local residents through Medi-Cal, Healthy Families, L.A. Care’s Healthy Kids and L.A. Care Health Plan Medicare Advantage HMO SNP, among other programs. The web-based eConsult is part of DHS and HealthCare L.A. Independent Physicians Association. Funding and management for eConsult is provided by MedPoint Management and Community Clinic Association of Los Angeles County and L.A. Care. L.A. Care provides major funding and management for the program.