Media Center

Get the Facts on the Proposal to Recast and Modernize OSHPD

Graphic with blue background which features the OSHPD logo and the word news underneath it.

Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development Proposed Trailer Bill Legislation

OSHPD Recast and Modernization Fact Sheet


Issue:

The statutory changes recast the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development (OSHPD) as the Department of Health Care Access and Information (HCAI), strengthen health workforce and other data assets, build a more robust health workforce data system, and analyze that data to better inform policy recommendations to help support the state’s health care workforce.

Background:

Pursuant to the Governor’s January Budget, this proposal would recast OSHPD as a department and align and improve its competencies to continue implementation of the Health Care Data Payments Program (HPD) and support the proposed Office of Health Care Affordability’s (OHCA) role in lowering health care costs while promoting an adequate health workforce that provides quality and equitable care. With the addition of the OHCA and the proposed changes on workforce programs and data assets, the new Department is poised to be a thought leader on health care access and information. The new Department is well-suited to play a key role in providing the data, vision, and programs to develop the health workforce to meet the state’s needs through a robust research and data center, development of workforce policy recommendations, and continued development and administration of its data assets.

Justification for Change:

The statutory changes help support the state’s role in developing and sustaining California’s health care workforce. Also, the substantial expansion of OSHPD’s mission with the addition of OHCA warrants OSHPD’s recast into a new department and improvements to the Department’s capabilities. Specifically, the proposal primarily includes the following components:

Department Name Change: Department of Health Care Access and Information

With the addition of new data programs such as the HPD and the proposed OHCA, OSHPD’s name does not reflect its emerging health policy leadership role and its mission is not clear to the public. A more descriptive name is the Department of Health Care Access and Information (HCAI). The Department’s work is centered on access to health care: to safe health care facilities; to an adequate workforce; to affordable, quality care; to financing for health facilities; and collecting and providing access to important information about health care outcomes, facilities, workforce, and finances.

Recasts and Expands the Health Care Workforce Clearinghouse as the California Health Workforce Research and Data Center

Recasts and expands the Health Care Workforce Clearinghouse as the “California Health Workforce Research and Data Center” (Data Center) to serve as the state’s central hub of health workforce data. This will also require all health licensing boards to collect a core set of data elements for health workforce analysis and to provide this data to OSHPD. The Data Center will provide better and timelier data and analysis to inform state policy regarding issues of workforce shortage, equity, and distribution; provide data to the new Department’s OHCA, and HPD programs; and evaluate the effectiveness of its workforce programs.

Establishes a Single Statewide California Health Workforce Education and Training Council

The Council will provide guidance on statewide education and health workforce training needs across key areas, including general physician education, primary care and behavioral health, and will advise on increasing the supply and diversity of physician and non-physician providers as well as the placement of providers in medically underserved areas. This would include technical assistance to new residency programs and making recommendations to improve the State’s other workforce programs. As currently done with the California Healthcare Workforce Policy Commission and Health Professions Education Foundation (HPEF), the new Department will consider the Council’s policy recommendations as part of its administration of workforce programs, including funding and award selection.

Maintain Health Professions Education Foundation Programs without 501(c)(3) Structure

OSHPD seeks efficiency by operating the Health Professions Education Foundation (HPEF) workforce programs as a part of the new Department’s existing workforce portfolio while maintaining its licensing revenue streams. HPEF was established in 1987 to provide a clear way for private tax-deductible donations to support scholarship and loan repayment awards for aspiring health professionals. However, it is unnecessary for state programs to be under a 501(c)(3) to provide tax-exempt treatment of donations. Due to its 501(c)(3) status, the accounting and audit requirements of HPEF are costly and burdensome. The existing funding streams would continue to support these important scholarship and loan repayment programs.

Integrate the State Office of Rural Health and the J-1 Visa Waiver Program into the Primary Care Office

Consolidating the State Office of Rural Health (CalSORH), currently located within the Department of Health Care Services, into the Primary Care Office (PCO) in the new Department will provide a centralized and better targeted approach to working with rural communities on their health care infrastructure and workforce needs and does so with fewer staff by leveraging its existing PCO infrastructure. In addition, OSHPD’s expertise makes it well-suited to administer the J-1 Visa Waiver Program, which assists doctors from other countries in obtaining a J-1 Visa waiver to practice medicine in California.

 Strengthen Data Programs

With existing resources, OSHPD proposes to update current statutes on data reporting to enhance data quality, improve access to available data, and reduce administrative burden on data providers through the following:

— Based on program experience and public stakeholder committee feedback, amend existing statutes pertaining to coronary artery bypass graft outcomes reporting to provide the new Department the flexibility to perform outcomes reporting for new and emerging cardiac procedures, such as transcatheter aortic valve replacement.

— Update existing statutes pertaining to vital statistics to ensure timely, efficient transmission of birth and death data to the new Department for the purposes of public reporting and research, such as analyses on maternal quality of care and inpatient mortality.