The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has issued proposed regulations to implement Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Section 1557 prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin (including immigration status and language), sex (including sex stereotyping and gender identity), age, or disability in health programs. These protections apply to consumers in all federally funded state health programs, including Covered California and Medi-Cal.
The proposed regulations are a good first step, but the rule could be made stronger to better protect people at risk of discrimination in health coverage or care, including communities of color, Limited English Proficient, women, LGBTQ populations, and persons with disabilities.
Public comments are needed to strengthen these proposed regulations. While comments submitted by organizations are important, it also is very important for individual members of the public to submit personalized comments.
At our recent town hall meetings to discuss the California Reducing Disparities Project’s Statewide Strategic Plan to Reduce Mental Health Disparities a lot of attendees asked about the funding solicitations for Phase 2 of the project. This week, the California Department of Public Health, Office of Health Equity (OHE) released draft versions of these solicitations for public comment (and not for submitting proposals yet). You can review them and share your feedback to the Office of Health Equity by March 25th. The final solicitations, considering the public comments, will be available at a later date.
Here is the full announcement from OHE including how to access the solicitations and submit your comments:
The California Department of Public Health, Office of Health Equity has posted draft pre-solicitations for the California Reducing Disparities Project (CRDP), Phase 2 implementation on BidSync, links for BidSync on our website and links below. This is not a request for bids at this time. The purpose of the release is to solicit public feedback about our program and solicitation designs prior to release of the official solicitations. We are not accepting applications at this time.
Though we have done a lot of work to put these solicitations together, we acknowledge that there are still ways for us to improve our solicitations so that we can obtain the best bidders and ultimately the best provider of services for CRDP. We are asking: