Cancer Screening and Support

About the Program

Preventing, detecting and treating cancer with excellence and dignity

Our Commitment:

In 2023, CalOptima Health launched the Comprehensive Community Cancer Screening and Support program with the goal of lowering late-stage breast, cervical, colorectal and lung cancer diagnoses in Orange County. To reach this goal, CalOptima Health has partnered with leaders in the fight against cancer to make sure all CalOptima Health members have equitable access to high-quality care by:

  • Raising cancer awareness and engagement mainly among high-risk members and county residents
  • Increasing member options to access cancer screenings and treatment centers
  • Improving member experience throughout their cancer care journey

“Equitable access to quality cancer care for Medi-Cal members is non-negotiable, and Orange County is fortunate to have outstanding resources for cancer prevention and treatment,” said Michael Hunn, CalOptima Health Chief Executive Officer. “CalOptima Health is leveraging key cancer centers and activating community opinion leaders to the point where cancer detection is part of our community’s daily discussions.”

Cancer Facts About CalOptima Health Members:

In early 2023, 3,718 CalOptima Health members were newly diagnosed with cancer. Of these, 1,426 are these types of cancer:

  • 522 breast cancer
  • 89 cervical cancer
  • 412 colorectal cancer
  • 403 lung cancer

About 3 in 5 eligible CalOptima Health members have not been screened for cervical, breast or colorectal cancer. Increasing cancer screenings is key for the early detection and treatment of cancer. It can also help raise life expectancy, quality of life and lower health care costs.

Building the Program:

In December 2022, the Comprehensive Community Cancer Screening and Support program was funded through CalOptima Health’s share of Intergovernmental Transfer (IGT) funding of $50.1 million over 5 years. With these funds, CalOptima Health aims to improve cancer awareness, screening access and treatment experience for members through the largest prevention program investment in our health plan history.

In early 2023, CalOptima Health staff facilitated brainstorming sessions with key stakeholders to assess barriers and opportunities for program development. CalOptima Health also surveyed contracted community health centers to learn about their mammography screening capacity and on-site mammography equipment access.

In May 2023, CalOptima Health partnered with City of Hope in Orange County. These efforts leveraged many key member benefits to ease barriers to cancer screenings such as:

  • Using trained health educators for direct outreach to members
  • Scheduling transportation to screening centers
  • Communicating with providers when members needed more diagnostic screening services

In 2024, CalOptima Health plans to start a comprehensive awareness and education campaign that will focus on members, community and providers. CalOptima Health will also explore funding opportunities to support local organizations that aim to increase access to cancer screenings and improve the cancer treatment experience.

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