Code Section

Welfare and Institutions Code - WIC

DIVISION 9. PUBLIC SOCIAL SERVICES [10000 - 18999.98]

  ( Division 9 added by Stats. 1965, Ch. 1784. )
  

PART 3. AID AND MEDICAL ASSISTANCE [11000 - 15771]

  ( Part 3 added by Stats. 1965, Ch. 1784. )
  

CHAPTER 7. Basic Health Care [14000 - 14199.67]

  ( Chapter 7 added by Stats. 1965, 2nd Ex. Sess., Ch. 4. )
  

ARTICLE 4. The Medi-Cal Benefits Program [14131 - 14138]
  ( Heading of Article 4 renumbered from Article 4.2 by Stats. 1977, Ch. 1252. )

  
14132.723.  

(a) (1) Notwithstanding any other law, neither face-to-face contact nor a patient’s physical presence on the premises shall be required for services provided by an enrolled community clinic to a Medi-Cal beneficiary during or immediately following a state of emergency, as described in Section 8628.5 of the Government Code.

(2) Notwithstanding any other law, the department may apply paragraph (1) to services provided by another enrolled fee-for-service Medi-Cal provider, clinic, or facility during or immediately following a state of emergency.

(b) For purposes of this section, the following terms have the following meanings:

(1) (A) “Enrolled community clinic” means a community clinic licensed under subdivision (a) of Section 1204 of the Health and Safety Code, an intermittent clinic exempt from licensure under subdivision (h) of Section 1206 of the Health and Safety Code, a clinic operated by the state or any of its political subdivisions, including, but not limited to, the University of California or a city or county that is exempt from licensure under subdivision (b) of Section 1206 of the Health and Safety Code, a tribal clinic exempt from licensure under subdivision (c) of Section 1206 of the Health and Safety Code, or an outpatient setting conducted, maintained, or operated by a federally recognized Indian tribe, tribal organization, or urban Indian organization, as defined in Section 1603 of Title 25 of the United States Code, that is certified, as applicable, and enrolled in good standing as a Medi-Cal provider or, in the case of an intermittent site, is added to a parent clinic’s provider master file under Section 14043.15.

(B) An outpatient setting that operates as a federally qualified health center (FQHC) or a rural health center (RHC) shall qualify as an enrolled community clinic, regardless of its license type or license-exempt status.

(2) “Immediately following” means up to 90 calendar days, as deemed appropriate by the department, following the termination of the proclaimed state of emergency, as described in Section 8629 of the Government Code. Under extraordinary circumstances, including, but not limited to, the destruction of an enrolled location, as described in subdivision (a), the department may extend, in its discretion or at the direction of the Governor, the period of time immediately following the termination of a state of emergency beyond 90 calendar days and for as long as is necessary for the health and safety of the public.

(3) (A) “Premises” means either of the following, as applicable:

(i) A site located within the four walls of the enrolled community clinic, and at the address listed either on the primary care clinic license or in the provider master file.

(ii) A site located within the four walls of the enrolled fee-for-service Medi-Cal provider, clinic, or facility, and at the address listed either on its license or in the provider master file.

(B) For purposes of an FQHC or RHC, “premises” include a site located outside of the four walls of the FQHC or RHC, and at an address other than the address listed on its license or in the provider master file, but within the boundaries of the proclamation declaring the state of emergency.

(4) “Telehealth” has the same meaning as provided in Section 2290.5 of the Business and Professions Code.

(5) “Telephonic services” means health services provided via telephone with audio component only.

(c) The following services shall be reimbursable when provided by an enrolled community clinic, an enrolled fee-for-service Medi-Cal program provider, clinic, or facility approved by the department pursuant to paragraph (2) of subdivision (a) during or immediately following a state of emergency for any dates of service on or after the date that the department obtains federal approvals and federal matching funds to implement these provisions pursuant to subdivision (f).

(1) Telehealth services, including services provided by the enrolled community clinic or approved enrolled provider, clinic, or facility at a distant site location, whether on or off the premises, to a Medi-Cal beneficiary located at an originating site, which includes the beneficiary’s home, temporary shelter, or any other location, if the services are provided somewhere located within the boundaries of the proclamation declaring the state of emergency.

(2) Telephonic services.

(3) Covered benefit services that are otherwise reimbursable to an FQHC or RHC, but that are provided somewhere off the premises, including, but not limited to, at a temporary shelter, a Medi-Cal beneficiary’s home, or any location other than the premises, but within the boundaries of the proclamation declaring the state of emergency.

(d) For purposes of paragraph (1) of subdivision (c), and consistent with Section 14132.72, the department shall ensure its reimbursement policies reflect the intent of the Legislature to authorize reimbursement for telehealth services appropriately provided by an enrolled community clinic, or, if approved by the department pursuant to paragraph (2) of subdivision (a), by an enrolled fee-for-service Medi-Cal provider, clinic, or facility, respectively, during or immediately following a state of emergency. This subdivision does not limit reimbursement for, or coverage of, or reduce access to, services provided through telehealth on or before the enactment of this section.

(e) Notwithstanding Chapter 3.5 (commencing with Section 11340) of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code, the department may implement, interpret, and make specific this section by means of all-county letters, plan letters, plan or provider bulletins, or similar instructions, without taking regulatory action.

(f) This section shall be implemented only to the extent that both of the following occur:

(1) The department obtains any federal approvals necessary to implement this section.

(2) The department obtains federal matching funds to the extent permitted by federal law.

(Added by Stats. 2019, Ch. 829, Sec. 1. (AB 1494) Effective January 1, 2020.)