Mental Health Service Provider Resources

CenCal Health covers substance use screening and treatment services provided at primary healthcare locations.

Please use the Behavioral Health Care Coordination Request Form when requesting care coordination for mental health or substance use services. 

Covered Benefits:

Mental health services are a covered benefit for CenCal Health members when medically necessary and provided by a provider contracted with CenCal. CenCal Health is responsible for providing medically necessary non-specialty mental health services.

Types of Services Provided:

The following Mental Health services covered by CenCal Health include:

  • Initial mental health assessment evaluation does not require a referral or preauthorization.
  • Individual, family and group mental health evaluation and treatment does not require a referral or pre-authorization.
  • Psychological testing, when clinically indicated to evaluate a mental health condition requires pre-authorization.
  • Outpatient services for the purposes of monitoring drug therapy.
  • Outpatient laboratory, drugs, supplies and supplements.
  • Psychiatric consultation to a member to establish medical necessity for medication management of a psychiatric or behavioral disorder. No preservice authorization required. Treating physician must be the requesting provider. Note: psychiatric consultation in the Emergency Room is not a covered benefit.
  • Preventative family therapy services for pediatric members under the age of 21 with elevated Adverse Childhood Experience (ACE) scores who are not presenting with a diagnosable mental health condition.

Carved Out Benefit: 
The County Department of Behavioral Health provides treatment for Members with Substance Use Disorders.
Members must be referred and contact the Santa Barbara County ACCESS line 1 (888) 321-2843 or the San Luis Obispo County ACCESS line 1 (800) 838-1381 to be screened. 

Screening Tools:

Templates:

Resources: 

Counties of Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo

For more details or to consult with the Behavioral Health Department, please call (805) 562-1600

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do I need to fax the above Level of Care screening Tool to CenCal Health?

A: No, please ensure that all members have the screening in their medical records.

Q: Are there limitations to how often I can see a member? 

A: CenCal Health provides Mental Health Benefits to  members with mild to moderate impairment of functioning. The frequency of services are required to be consistent with the treatment of a mild to moderate impairment

Q: My Patient needs a higher level of care, what do I do?

A:  Mental Health providers recommending members for a higher level of care should discuss these recommendations with the member and fax the Level of Care Form showing member is "severe" with a Transition of Care Form to the Behavioral Health Department. You should continue to provide services to the member until they are engaged with a County level provider.