San Diego County – Utilizing Medi-Cal Expansion to Increase Health-Care Access
Located along a gritty street north of downtown, the Community Transition Center in San Diego County is bustling with activity. Only the locked gates remind you that the old motel now has a new purpose. Inside, dozens of probationers talk and hang out in small groups. Working among them is a social worker who has a goal of getting as many signed up for Medi-Cal health care as she can.
That social worker is 18-year veteran Susan Muro. She’s on the front lines of the County’s collaborative plan that focuses on enrolling individuals in sheriff’s custody or under probation supervision in Medi-Cal. It’s all part of the County’s comprehensive Live Well San Diego wellness strategy; a portion of that strategy focuses on improving the health of low-income residents. When the Affordable Care Act expanded Medi-Cal to single, low-income adults, a new population was eligible for health care. And San Diego County was quick to see the advantages. The county found that less than 10 percent of the male inmates ever had health insurance since they were 18 years old.