California Medicaid preps enrollment for $300K practice support grants

California dentists can begin applyingg for $300,000 in student loan repayment or practice support as of Jan. 13, according to the California Dental Association.

The grant program is through the Medi-Cal Physicians and Dentists Loan Repayment Program, also known as CalHealthCares. Dentists have between Jan. 13 and Feb. 7, 2020, to enroll.

To be eligible for the grant, dentists must be a recent graduate and have a caseload of at least 30 percent Medi-Cal members for five years. Dentists are also required to submit a business plan that details where he or she will relocate, expand or establish a practice on a dental professional shortage area.

Common reasons dentists have been ineligible to receive the grant were because:

• They were not in good standing with the Department of Health Care Services.
• They submitted an incomplete employer verification form.
• They were enrolled in another loan repayment program.
• They did not meet the graduate date requirement.

In 2019, the program handed out $10.1 million in student loan repayment to 38 dentists.

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