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SB-165 Medical interpretation services.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 01/28/2019 09:00 PM
SB165:v99#DOCUMENT


CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill No. 165


Introduced by Senator Atkins
(Principal coauthor: Senator Pan)

January 28, 2019


An act to amend Sections 14146 and 14146.5 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, relating to Medi-Cal.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 165, as introduced, Atkins. Medical interpretation services.
Existing law provides for the Medi-Cal program, which is administered by the State Department of Health Care Services, under which qualified low-income individuals receive health care services. The Medi-Cal program is, in part, governed and funded by federal Medicaid program provisions. Existing law, until July 1, 2020, among other things, requires the department to work with stakeholders to conduct a study to identify current requirements for medical interpretation services and make recommendations on strategies that may be employed regarding the provision of medical interpretation services for Medi-Cal beneficiaries who are limited English proficient. Existing law requires that the department work with stakeholders to establish a pilot project based on the recommendations of the study, as specified.
This bill would instead require the department to establish a pilot project concurrent with the study, as specified. The bill would extend the operation of these provisions to July 1, 2022.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 14146 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is amended to read:

14146.
 (a) (1) The department shall work with identified stakeholders to conduct a study to identify current requirements for medical interpretation services as well as education, training, and licensure requirements, analyze other state Medicaid programs, and make recommendations on strategies that may be employed regarding the provision of medical interpretation services for Medi-Cal beneficiaries who are limited English proficient (LEP), in compliance with applicable state and federal requirements.

(b)

(2) The study also shall assess and make recommendations based on pilot projects projects, studies, and available data that would further the objectives of this article, including funding for those activities and the allowable use of federal funding.

(c)Based on the recommendations of the study related to pilot projects established under subdivision (b), and available funding pursuant to subdivision (f), the

(b) (1) The department shall work with identified stakeholders to establish a pilot project in concurrent with the study.
(2) A pilot project shall include up to four separate sites to evaluate a mechanism to provide and improve medical interpretation services for LEP Medi-Cal beneficiaries. In identifying sites, the department shall take into account both the need for those services and the recommendations from the study. the studies and available data identified under paragraph (2) of subdivision (a).

(d)

(c) The department may use or contract with an external vendor, vendors, or other contracted subject matter experts to implement the activities described in this section. The department shall consult with identified stakeholders regarding the draft initial scope of work that shall be used to seek and evaluate proposals pursuant to this section.

(e)

(d) (1) Each year, commencing in 2017, during the annual state budget process, the department shall provide an update to the budget committees of the Legislature on the implementation of this article.
(2) Any report submitted under this subdivision shall be submitted in compliance with Section 9795 of the Government Code.

(f)

(e) (1) For activities under this section, the department may expend up to three million dollars ($3,000,000) under Provision 14 of Item 4260-101-0001 of Section 2.00 of the Budget Act of 2016 (Chapter 23 of the Statutes of 2016) for the support of activities related to a medical interpreters pilot project, study, or both.
(2) The department may seek any available federal funding for support of activities relating to medical interpretation services as provided under this section.
(3) Expenditure or encumbrance of the funds described in this subdivision is contingent upon approval by the Department of Finance.

SEC. 2.

 Section 14146.5 of the Welfare and Institutions Code is amended to read:

14146.5.
 This article shall become inoperative on July 1, 2020, 2022, and, as of January 1, 2021, is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, that becomes operative on or before January 1, 2021, deletes or extends the dates on which it becomes inoperative and 2023, is repealed.