Biweekly Briefing Articles

5 Things To Know: Public Safety Power Shutoffs, Medi-Cal Rx, Minority Fellowship Program, Patient Safety Evaluation Summit, Behavioral Health System

PUBLIC SAFETY POWER SHUTOFFS: San Diego Gas & Electric (SDGE) is conducting two public safety power shutoff (PSPS) exercises and welcomes the attendance and participation of external stakeholders:   

PSPS Tabletop Exercise: April 11, 8 a.m.-noon ​  

  • This in-person exercise in Kearny Mesa will involve all PSPS stages and wildfire response​. 
  • Virtual attendance opportunities are available.​  
  • An optional tour of SDGE’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC) will follow the exercise.  

PSPS Full-Scale Exercise: May 1-2​  

  • SDGE EOC activation will exercise EOC immediate PSPS preparedness activities (notification and planning) as well as de-energization of EOC functions and wildfire response coordination​.  
  • Agencies participating include the San Diego County Office of Emergency Services (OES), the California OES, the city of San Diego, and other public safety partners. This is an opportunity for agencies to practice their Red Flag Warning and PSPS response and coordination capabilities.​  

If you are interested in participating, please complete the Extent of Play Agreement and email a PDF copy to If you are interested in scheduling a tour for your organization, please reach out to

MEDI-CAL RX: On March 24, Medi-Cal Rx Reinstatement Phase III, Lift 1 began for members ages 22 and older. It is phasing out the Transition Policy for identified Standard Therapeutic Classes, which will lift the override of National Council for Prescription Drug Programs. A scenario-based learning tool allows providers to self-test their understanding of the submission of prior authorizations in advance of the retirement of the Transition Policy. This tool is available as an online quiz or in a printable PDF format. ​  

MINORITY FELLOWSHIP PROGRAM: This program from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration is designed to recruit, train, and support master’s and doctoral level students in behavioral health care professions. This would be done by:   

  • Increasing the knowledge of mental and/or substance use disorder behavioral health professionals on issues related to prevention, treatment, and recovery support for individuals who are from racial and ethnic minority populations and have a mental or substance use disorder.  
  • Increasing the number of culturally competent mental and substance use disorder professionals who teach, administer services, conduct research, and provide direct mental and/or substance use disorder services to racial and ethnic minority populations.  
  • Improving the quality of mental and substance use disorder prevention and treatment services delivered to racial and ethnic minority populations. 

Applications are due May 9.  

PATIENT SAFETY EVALUATION SUMMIT: The Hospital Quality Institute’s Patient Safety Evaluation System (PSES) Summit, which will be held over two half-days, is set for May 9-10. The summit will provide attendees with tools to understand the sometimes confusing and intimidating legalese of the PSES. In addition to the keynote topic on attaining zero harm goals and two Safe Tables, attendees can choose from 11 breakout sessions. Presenters will answer questions about how to manage institutional PSES and improve the delivery of patient care design, as well as discuss innovative programs that reduce costs, accelerate efficiency, and enhance reliability.     

BEHAVIORAL HEALTH SYSTEM: Gov. Newsom recently announced next steps to modernize how California treats mental illness and substance use disorders. His plan includes three key elements:   

  • A general obligation bond to fund behavioral health residential facilities along with housing for homeless veterans  
  • A ballot initiative to modernize the Mental Health Services Act  
  • A proposal to make today’s behavioral health system work better for all Californians by improving statewide accountability and access to behavioral health services