The Los Angeles Department of Health Services (DHS) is the second-largest municipal health system in the nation, acting as a sprawling safety-net system, primarily serving Black and Hispanic and low-income populations – residents who are uninsured or covered by Medi-Cal. Despite continuous improvements DHS has undertaken to respond to changes in the healthcare industry and increase the system’s efficiency, the Covid-19 the pandemic exposed the remaining difficulties that many DHS patients face in accessing specialty medical care. For example, recent data analysis showed that the average wait to see a specialist in the system was 89 days, with particular frustration among patients receiving potentially lifesaving radiology tests.
DHS is committed to addressing these delays and is looking to institute concrete improvements and enhancements that ensure its residents’ highest quality of care. Over the next year, FUSE will work to initiate an enterprise-wide system of care for radiology in the County. FUSE will implement standardized operating procedures across clinics and leverage DHS’ expansive network of community partners to decompress current backlogs. These efforts will enable LA County to reimagine one of its primary specialty care units, building healthier communities across the LA region.