Skip to Main Content

Initial Health Assessment

The Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) requires all new Medi-Cal members complete their comprehensive Initial Health Assessments with their primary care provider within 120 days from plan enrollment.The Initial Health Assessment (IHA) can be completed by a primary care physician (PCP), nurse practitioner, certified nurse midwife, or physician assistant. At a minimum, it must include:

The IHA is required by DHCS for all newly enrolled patients, including those with disabilities. Providers must follow DHCS requirements for completing the IHA, in accordance with DHCS Plan Letters 08-003 and 13-001.

Additional IHA Requirements for Medi-Cal Patients

Age Requirement
21 and older Follow DHCS guidelines and California Health & Wellness Plan (CHWP) preventive care services guidelines The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) A and B Recommendations are considered the minimum acceptable standards for adult preventive care services. 
Under 21

Follow the Bright Futures/American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) (PDF) Recommendations for Preventive Pediatric Health Care, also known as the Periodicity Schedule, for all new pediatric members for wellness examinations.

For members under age 18 months, providers should follow the AAP periodicity schedule for ages two and younger, whichever is less.

The AAP periodicity schedule includes age specific assessments and services required by the Child Health and Disability Prevention (CHDP) Program. When exams occur more frequently using the AAP periodicity schedule rather than the CHDP exam schedule, the IHA must follow the AAP exam schedule and the scheduled assessments must include all content required by the CHDP for the lower age nearest to the current age of the child. Refer to the Child Health and Disability Prevention (CHDP) Program in the provider operations manual for more information on preventative services for members under the age of 21.

Provider webinar training:

Topic Initial Health Assessment (IHA) Requirements
Speaker Pam Carpenter, RN, DHCS Master Trainer Quality Improvement Manager, Facility Site and Medical Record Review
Details In this presentation we review IHA requirements, Staying Health Assessment forms, Facility Site Review, Medical Record Review and resources
Recording Link View recording here
PDF version only Initial Health Assessment Requirements Webinar Training Slides (PDF)