Current Initiatives

Health Care Provider Workforce Development Initiative

The CalOptima Health Provider Workforce Development Initiative will increase access to high-quality, equitable care for members by investing in strategies that aim to close gaps in Orange County’s health care workforce.

To address the crisis shortages and gaps in the Orange County health care provider workforce, CalOptima Health allocated $50 million over five years towards the Health Care Provider Workforce Development Initiative to increase opportunities for education, training, recruitment and retention of health professionals needed to serve our diverse members. The initiative includes:

Competitive Grant Programs: The first of two rounds of grants will focus on providing funding for educational investments to increase the number of health care professionals. A second round of grant funding will be announced for workforce training and development innovation.

Physician Recruitment and Loan Repayment Programs: CalOptima Health will launch two physician recruitment and loan repayment programs in 2024. More information will be provided on the application process and timeline soon.

Stakeholder Collaborative: CalOptima Health will convene an Orange County Health Care Provider Workforce Development Collaborative in 2024. More information will be provided on how to participate in the collaborative soon.

Funding Opportunities

Round 1: Educational Investments to Increase Supply of Health Care Professionals

CalOptima Health Awards $25 Million in Workforce Education Grants

CalOptima Health’s Board of Directors has approved nearly $25 million in workforce education grants to seven institutions in Orange County. These grants mark the first phase of the $50 million Provider Workforce Development Initiative, the largest workforce grant ever awarded by CalOptima Health. The Initiative will help to address health disparities and better secure the future delivery of medical and behavioral health care by safety net providers. It also seeks to ease predicted shortages and gaps in the Orange County health care workforce that serves the Medi-Cal population.

“CalOptima Health recognizes that our mission to serve members begins with having a strong health care workforce to deliver quality care,” said Michael Hunn, CEO of CalOptima Health. “The challenge of health care worker shortages at organizations across Orange County drove CalOptima Health’s landmark community investment in a $50 million Provider Workforce Development Initiative.”

Orange County-based institutions receiving grant awards in the first phase of funding are as follows:

  • California State University, Fullerton
  • Chapman University
  • Coast Community College District
  • Concordia University Irvine
  • Orange County United Way
  • Santiago Canyon College
  • University of California, Irvine, Sue and Bill Gross School of Nursing

Round 2: Workforce Training and Development Innovation Fund

To be announced in June 2024 (timeframe subject to change).

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