Medi-Cal Update

Inpatient Services | March 2020 | Bulletin 546

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1. The Medi-Cal Learning Portal Will Soon Be Upgraded

The Medi-Cal Learning Portal (MLP) will soon be upgraded and users will experience a new look, feel and navigational changes. The MLP is hosted using a commercial off-the-shelf software application that automates the administration, tracking and reporting of training events. The MLP publishes training material and curriculum on the internet and manages the training programs for the provider and billing communities.

The functions of the upgraded MLP are easy to navigate, and users will have logical, straight-forward access to much of what they need. The new MLP enables a blended approach to learning, combining classroom delivery, business and technical workshops, virtual classrooms, e-learning and one-on-one mentoring.

The refreshed Medi-Cal Learning Portal page will continue to be accessible from either its original location or from the Outreach & Education page of the Medi-Cal website. There will be no changes to how users will reach the upgraded MLP.

With some of the new or improved features, users will be able to:

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2. Electronic SAR Now Supports Attachments

The California Children’s Services (CCS) and Genetically Handicapped Persons Program (GHPP) providers can now submit Service Authorization Requests (SARs) in an electronic format (eSARs) with attachments. Attachments must be in format of PDF, JPG or TIF. Attachments must be less than 15 megabytes (MB) in size, with the sum of all attachments being less than 150 MB. This feature aims to eliminate the paper SAR process for providers with internet connectivity.

To submit eSARs, providers must:

Then, select one of the available options to submit:

  1. Utilize the enhanced online fillable form of the PEDI system to submit eSARs with the attachment

  2. Generate and submit one of the supported file-based transmission formats:
    • Web-based file upload utility in the eSAR system to submit ASC X12 275/278 transactions

    • Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP)/Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) secure web services method to transmit and receive ASC X12 275/278 transactions

Registered providers and clearinghouses can complete and submit the eSAR requests on behalf of the providers and facilities in their network.

Paper SAR submissions remain an option for low-volume SAR providers or submitters who may have technical limitations or practical reasons to do so.

Providers interested in learning more about eSAR submissions should contact the CMS Net Help Desk at or 1-866-685-8449 for helpful guidance and additional information.

This information is reflected in the following provider manual(s):

Provider Manual(s) Page(s) Updated
Audiology and Hearing Aids
Chronic Dialysis Clinics
Clinics and Hospitals
Durable Medical Equipment
General Medicine
Home Health Agencies/Home and Community-Based Services
Hospice Care Program
Inpatient Service
Local Educational Agency
Psychological Services
Rehabilitation Clinics
Vision Care
cal child sar (12)
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3. New Provider Web Page Coming Soon to the New Medi-Cal Provider Website

The Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) will launch a New Provider web page with the upcoming release of its new Medi-Cal Provider website.

This new web page will offer an organized location for critical information, helpful documents and charts, as well as key links that a “new provider” will need to ensure a successful setup and future as a provider within the Medi-Cal program.

The “New Provider” web page will include information on the following critical Medi-Cal subjects:

DHCS projects a spring 2020 launch. It is recommended that providers continually check the current Medi-Cal website for updates. Providers are also encouraged to subscribe to the convenient and free Medi-Cal Subscription Service (MCSS) to ensure they receive the latest policy news and program updates immediately and regularly.

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4. May 2020 Medi-Cal Provider Seminar

The May Medi-Cal provider seminar is scheduled for May 12, 2020, at the Red Lion Hotel in Redding, California. Providers can access a class schedule for the seminar by visiting the Provider Training web page of the Medi-Cal Learning Portal (MLP) and clicking the seminar date(s) they would like to attend. Providers may RSVP by logging in to the MLP.

Throughout the year, the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) and the California MMIS Fiscal Intermediary conduct Medi-Cal training seminars. These seminars, which target both novice and experienced providers and billing staff, cover the following topics:

Providers must register by April 24, 2020, to receive a hard copy of the Medi-Cal provider training workbooks on the date(s) of training. After April 24, 2020, the workbooks will be available only by download on the Medi-Cal Provider Training Workbooks page of the Medi-Cal website.


  Wi-Fi will not be provided at the seminar. Please plan accordingly.

Providers that require more in-depth claim and billing information have the option to receive one-on-one claims assistance, which is available at all seminars, in the Claims Assistance Room.

Providers may also schedule a custom billing workshop. To contact the regional representative for your area, providers must first contact the Telephone Service Center (TSC) at 1-800-541-5555 and request to be contacted by a regional representative.

Providers are encouraged to bookmark the Provider Training web page and refer to it often for current seminar information.

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5. Provider Manual Revisions

Pages updated due to ongoing provider manual revisions:

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