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New Board Will Oversee County’s CalOptima Health System

A new Board of Directors will meet next month to oversee CalOptima, Orange County’s comprehensive health system for low-income residents, after being selected by the Orange County Board of Supervisors.

CalOptima contracts with the State of California to administer the $3.3 billion health plan for nearly 800,000 people in Orange County, or nearly one in four of Orange County’s 3.1 million residents. The selection of the new board followed an extensive public process, with 54 applications submitted—the highest number received in CalOptima’s 20-year history.

“With the evolving healthcare landscape and upcoming challenges facing CalOptima, we are pleased to welcome the new members and look forward to utilizing their expertise to govern our Medi-Cal system,” said Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Lisa Bartlett, Fifth District.

Supervisor Andrew Do, whose First District includes the largest number of CalOptima members, said the new board will increase oversight and transparency for the health system. “The makeup of the new board gives taxpayers more power to hold their elected officials and government agencies accountable,” Supervisor Do said.

The nine voting seats filled by unanimous Board of Supervisors approval were:

  •   Lee Penrose—selected for the seat to be filled by a current or former hospital administrator. Penrose has served on the board for four years and is the current CEO of a hospital serving Medi-Cal recipients.
  •   Paul Yost—selected for the seat to be filled by a licensed physician in current practice who is also a representative of an independent physicians’ association or health network. Yost is a pediatric and adult anesthesiologist who serves on a number of leadership boards.
  •   Nikan Khatibi—selected for the seat to be filled by a licensed medical provider in current practice who is not an owner or officer or a member of the board of directors of a contracted independent physicians’ association or a health network. Khatibi is an addiction medicine specialist who serves on numerous health care leadership boards and holds two statewide appointments.
  •   Scott Schoeffel—selected for the seat to be filled by an individual whose preferred background includes prior health care system experience; or professional accounting or public finance experience; or is an actively licensed attorney. Schoeffel is an attorney

with more than 24 years of experience specializing in health care law with an expertise in State and Federal managed care.

  •   Ronald Diluigi—selected for the seat to be filled by a legal resident of Orange County. Diluigi retired in July 2015 as vice president and chief advocacy officer for a private health system after more than 45 years of experience in executive positions in the public and private sectors, including as former assistant director of the County Health Care Agency.
  •   Ria Berger—selected for the seat to be filled by a representative of a community clinic. Berger is currently the CEO of Healthy Smiles and has more than 25 years of experience in human resources, leadership development and strategic planning for several health care companies.
  •   Alexander Nguyen—selected for the seat to be filled by a current recipient of CalOptima services or a family member of a current CalOptima member. Nguyen, founder of the Center for Asian American Wellness, is a resident physician at UCLA Medical Center whose mother is a current CalOptima member.
  •   Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Lisa A. Bartlett and Supervisor Andrew Do, serving as regular members representing the Board of Supervisors, and Supervisor Todd Spitzer as alternate member.For more information on CalOptima services, visit

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