Exploring Medi-Cal Telehealth Providers: A Guide to Accessing Remote Healthcare

By Jared Levenson - Reviewed on September 2, 2023
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In the ever-evolving healthcare landscape, telehealth has emerged as a game-changer, breaking down barriers and transforming how we receive and deliver care. 

This blog post explores the myriad benefits of telehealth via Medi-Cal providers, patients, and the healthcare industry.

From enhancing the convenience and accessibility of personal services to improving patient outcomes and streamlining workflows, let’s delve into the remarkable potential of telehealth.

Benefits of Telehealth 

As you know, for Medi-Cal providers and patients alike, the convenience and accessibility offered by telehealth are unmatched.

  • Bridging Gaps: Technology now aids care in remote areas.
  • Easy Access: Patients connect with specialists without travel hassles.
  • Addressing Barriers: Telehealth reaches underserved communities, overcoming geographic and socioeconomic hurdles.
  • Reduced Strain: Telehealth decreases wait times, easing healthcare facility pressures.
  • Patient Empowerment: Fosters proactive approach to health management.
  • Early Detection: Remote monitoring enables prompt health issue identification.
  • Mental Health Support: Virtual therapy sessions provide continuous care.
  • Remote Monitoring: Vital signs assessment and treatment adjustments made remotely.
  • Collaborative Care: Telehealth facilitates comprehensive patient care through multi-disciplinary collaborations.

Does Medi-Cal have telehealth?

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  • Medi-Cal offers telehealth coverage through the California Telemedicine Advancement Act (SB 1665), passed in 1996. This legislation established the foundation for telehealth services within the Medi-Cal program. Source
  • Telehealth appointments can be booked through various channels, such as the Medi-Cal app and website, or by calling 1-800-TELADOC (835-2362). These appointments are available 24/7 for medical consultations. Source
  • California patients can access free telehealth resources to receive healthcare services digitally, allowing them to videoconference with doctors using computers, tablets, or smartphones. Source
  • Members of L.A. Care Medi-Cal, L.A. Care Covered, and PASC-SEIU Plan can utilize telehealth services provided by Teladoc, free for those members without needing pre-approval. Source

What are the rules for telemedicine in California?

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Understanding the rules and regulations surrounding California telemedicine is crucial for healthcare providers and patients.

  • Telemedicine in California is legal and has no barriers as long as a licensed physician conducts it.
  • Written or verbal consent is required by state law from patients before initiating telehealth services.
  • Patients can voluntarily access Covered Services via telehealth with proper support.
  • Disciplinary actions may be taken for violating telemedicine regulations in California.
  • California has specific laws and rules defining essential requirements for providing telehealth services.
  • Verbal consent suffices for therapy sessions in California, but appropriate documentation is necessary.
  • Support for telemedicine services in California needs to be appropriately documented.
  • Parity in reimbursement rates for telehealth services in California may end on May 11, 2023.
  • Therapists in California must inform clients about the use of telehealth and obtain consent.
  • The California Medical Association strongly supports telemedicine, particularly in opioid treatment.

Is telemedicine the same as Teladoc?

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When seeking medical care remotely, telemedicine and Teladoc are often used interchangeably, but is telemedicine the same as Teladoc?

  • Telemedicine is a broader concept: Telemedicine refers to the practice of providing healthcare services remotely, using technology to bridge the gap between patients and healthcare providers. It encompasses various platforms, not limited to Teladoc.
  • Teladoc is a specific telehealth platform: Teladoc is one of the many telehealth platforms available, offering virtual medical consultations via video or phone calls with licensed physicians, therapists, and other healthcare professionals. 
  • Teladoc may require a separate subscription: Accessing Teladoc’s services typically requires a subscription or enrollment through an employer-sponsored benefit plan, whereas some telemedicine services may be covered by insurance or available directly through healthcare providers. 
  • Telemedicine can be used through other providers: While Teladoc stands as a popular choice, telemedicine services can also be accessed through different providers, clinics, hospitals, and healthcare systems, either locally or nationally, depending on one’s healthcare coverage.

How do I find my Medi-Cal provider?

  1. Please start with the Medi-Cal website: The official Medi-Cal website (https://www.medi-cal.ca.gov/) is a valuable resource where you can search for providers using their directory, which allows you to filter by location, specialty, and other criteria to find a provider that suits your needs. 
  2. Contact the Medi-Cal helpline: If you prefer talking to someone directly, you can call the Medi-Cal helpline at 1-800-541-5555 and speak with a representative who can assist you in finding a provider in your area or answer any questions you may have about the process.
  3. Use the Medi-Cal app: Medi-Cal offers a user-friendly app that allows you to access various services, including finding a provider. Download the app on your smartphone and take advantage of its features for a convenient search for providers near you. 
  4. Consult with your primary care physician: If you already have a primary care physician, reach out to them and inquire whether they accept Medi-Cal or can provide recommendations for providers who do. They can be a valuable resource in guiding you toward healthcare professionals in the Medi-Cal network.
  5. Seek assistance from local community health centers: Community health centers often work closely with Medi-Cal and have a network of providers who accept Medi-Cal patients. Visit or contact your local community health center and ask for guidance on finding a Medi-Cal provider. See here: https://findahealthcenter.hrsa.gov/

Medical Telehealth Providers Conclusion: 

Telehealth has revolutionized healthcare, bringing convenience, accessibility, and improved outcomes to Medi-Cal providers, patients, and the industry.

As we move forward, it is crucial to harness the full potential of telehealth, ensuring equitable access to care for all. By embracing this transformative technology, we can shape a future where quality healthcare knows no boundaries.

To learn more about telehealth, consider our articles covering accessibility, Medi-Cal, Medicaid, behavioral, for anxiety, urgent care, Georgia, Florida, and occupational therapy.

We would love to hear from you! Leave a comment below with any questions about Medi-Cal telehealth providers or suggest a mental health service, app, or course you think the Online Mental Health Reviews team should buy and review next. Your input is invaluable in helping us provide informative and helpful content.

If You Are In Crisis

Your safety is paramount if you’re experiencing a crisis and need immediate help. Call 911 or the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988 for immediate assistance. You can also contact the National Helpline of SAMHSA at 800-662-HELP (4357) for free, confidential support and information about mental health and substance abuse treatment options, available 24/7, 365 days a year. Remember, help is always available when you need it.

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