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New Members

As a new member of KFHC you will be receiving your Member I.D. card as well as other member materials in the mail within a couple of weeks of joining. One of our Member Service Representatives will also call you to welcome you, assist you with getting started, and to answer any questions you may have about your healthcare plan.
The steps you need to follow to get started in accessing your healthcare services are:

Choose a Primary Care Practitioner (PCP) or Clinic
You can choose a PCP or clinic from our Provider Directory mailed to you or by using the Doctor Search tool on our website. Call Member Services toll free at: (661) 632-1590 (Bakersfield) or 1-800-391-2000 (outside of Bakersfield) and one of our Member Services Representatives will note your choice or assist you with your selection.

You must choose your PCP within 30 days of becoming a member. If not, Kern Family Health Care will choose one for you. However, you may call Member Services at any time to change your PCP.

Make an Appointment with your Doctor
Once you have selected your PCP you should call to make an appointment with them for an Initial Health Assessment (IHA). An IHA is a complete physical exam. You do not have to be sick to see the doctor. You and all of the other KFHC members of your family should have an IHA. If you need help scheduling your IHA, call Member Services toll free at: (661) 632-1590 (Bakersfield) or 1-800-391-2000 (outside of Bakersfield) and ask for the member liaison.

Read your Member Handbook
You must make time to read your Member Handbook. There are helpful tips in it about how to access your health care. If you have questions, please call us toll free at: (661) 632-1590 (Bakersfield) or 1-800-391-2000 (outside of Bakersfield). We are happy to help.

Need to see a Specialist?
Call your PCP and make an appointment. If your PCP agrees that you need to see a specialist, he will generate a referral and send it to Kern Family Health Care. Routine referrals take 5 to 7 working days. If it is urgent, the approval takes 24 to 48hrs.

Need Gynecology or Obstetrics care?
You can go to any provider that is contracted with KFHC. This does not require an authorization from your PCP. Review your Provider Directory for a list of providers you can choose from.

Need to see a Vision doctor?
Eye exams and glasses (if needed) are covered every 24 months. For a list of vision doctors, refer to your Provider Directory or call Member Services toll free at: (661) 632-1590 (Bakersfield) or 1-800-391-2000 (outside of Bakersfield) and we will be happy to help you.

Need Mental Health Services?
Starting on January 1, 2014, we will provide new mental health services for our members.  To receive these benefits, you must receive prior authorization from KFHC.  For emergency mental health concerns, you can always call the Kern County Mental Health Crisis Hotline at 1-800-991-5272.

Need to go to an Urgent Care or a Hospital Emergency Room?
Kern Family Health Care (KFHC) does not require prior authorization for urgent care services. When you need urgent care services (i.e. you need to be seen within 48 hours), it is important to call your Primary Care Provider (PCP) first to see if there is an available appointment or to get medical advice.

You can also call the KFHC Advice Nurse line at 661-632-1590 (Bakersfield) or 1-800-391-2000 (Outside of Bakersfield) to get medical advice. If your PCP does not have an available appointment with the next 48 hours and you have an urgent medical concern, please go to the nearest contracted urgent care. When you are outside of Kern County and within the United States, you can receive urgent care service from a non-contracted urgent care.

If you have an emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room. An emergency is a medical condition with severe symptoms that require immediate medical attention which otherwise may place the person’s health in serious jeopardy, or cause serious impairment to the bodily function or organs of the patient. Examples of conditions that would be an emergency include:

  • Severe chest pains, difficulty breathing, poisoning, overdose, uncontrollable bleeding, convulsions, or unconsciousness.

  • Emergency services are covered if they are provided within the United States.

  • Emergency services in Canada or Mexico requiring hospitalization are covered.

  • Emergency services provided in any other country are not covered.

  • Transport by ambulance is only a covered benefit when used for a situation that is justified by medical necessity or is pre-approved by KFHC.

Did you have a baby?
We will cover your baby’s care from the month he or she is born to the end of the next month. You must apply for Medi-Cal through the Kern County Department of Human Services to continue coverage for your baby after that. Call your caseworker at 1-877-410-8812 for more details.

Looking for a Pharmacy?
Refer to your Provider Directory for a list of pharmacies you can choose from in your community. Or call our Member Services Department at 661-632-1590 (Bakersfield) or at 1-800-391-2000 (outside of Bakersfield) and we will be happy to help you. Pharmacies that are not available to KFHC members in Kern County are Walmart and Costco.

Health Education Programs
From classes to informational materials, it’s easy to get the help and the support you need. Learn about Weight Management, how to Stop Smoking and more! Just call Kern Family Health Care toll free at: (661) 632-1590 (Bakersfield) or 1-800-391-2000 (outside of Bakersfield).

While you’re enrolled with Kern Family Health Care, Medi-Cal fee-for-service still covers:

  • Dental

  • Chiropractor

  • Mental Health Services