Origin and History

The Children’s Specialty Care Coalition is a non-profit 501(c)(6) association representing nearly 2,500 pediatric specialists in California.

We are dedicated to ensuring children with complex health care needs have access to timely and high quality medical care, and that pediatric subspecialists are able to thrive in California’s health care environment, through strong leadership, education, and advocacy.

During the early 1990s, California was in the midst of a dire pediatric subspecialist shortage, leaving low-income children in the state without acceptable access to life-saving medical care. This was a result of the expansive growth of managed care, and its cost containment strategies that dominated the private insurance market. This caused reductions in private sector reimbursement, and de-facto eliminated the cross-subsidization that had funded health care for low-income sick children for generations.

In 1994, the Coalition’s founding members began a grassroots advocacy campaign to address the growing crisis. The Coalition was officially incorporated as a 501(c)(6) association in 2000, following one of its signature accomplishments, which was the passage by the state legislature of a 39 percent Medi-Cal rate increase for physician services, as part of the California Children’s Services Program. The increase had a substantial impact on improved access to pediatric subspecialty care in California.

Over the last 17 years, CSCC has made a profound impact in children’s access to specialty care in California. Some of the most notable achievements include achieving and maintaining a thirty nine percent enhanced reimbursement rate above the standard Medi-Cal rate for specialty care physicians, sponsoring legislation to extend the California Children’s Services (CCS) carve-out of specialty care from managed care from 1999-2017. Additionally, the Coalition supports legislation that improves and protects children’s health, such as recently passed legislation on immunization, SB 277, by Senator Richard Pan.

Most recently, CSCC worked in collaboration with a consortium of stakeholders in the successful passage of SB 586, by Senator Ed Hernandez, which helps ensure that the re-design of the CCS Program through the Whole Child Model (WCM) proceeds smoothly, with adequate safeguards in place to preserve the quality of care CCS-eligible children and youth receive.

Based in Sacramento, the Coalition’s foremost goal is to advocate on behalf of critically and chronically ill children and their families to ensure every child has access to the life-saving and life-enhancing health care they need and deserve.