About Us

Community Health Initiative of Orange County (CHI OC) exists to make a more equitable Orange County by making healthcare accessible and beneficial so residents can live healthy and successful lives.

Serving approximately 21,000 residents per year, CHI OC provides a bridge to healthcare services for individuals who—due to economic, language or proximity barriers—might otherwise never see a doctor outside of emergency circumstances, leading to unaffordable, high medical costs. Sadly, low-income families are more likely to be uninsured, which negatively impacts quality of life and financial stability and leads to a cycle of generational poverty (Kaiser Family Foundation, Key Facts about the Uninsured Population, 2020).

Our History

Launched in 2006 as part of a statewide network of children’s health initiatives, CHI OC has since expanded to not only serve children, but entire families and individuals, breaking down barriers to healthcare coverage and connecting them to crucial programs and services. In 2015, we became an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, having built a solid reputation for expertise, efficiency, and trust in our community.

Over the past decade, CHI OC established best practices for the industry as a whole, using our case management model to create a comprehensive support system to guide individuals through the entire process of utilizing healthcare services—from obtaining access, to making the most of the benefits, to maintaining healthcare coverage on an ongoing basis.

Our Mission

To connect all children and families to affordable and quality health care and social services.

Our Goals

  • To find and assist all children and families without healthcare.

  • To educate families about healthcare programs and the value of preventive care.

  • To ensure that each child has a health home with a primary physician and dentist.

  • To help families utilize and retain access to healthcare services.

In 2020, CHI OC reached out to 31,581 low-income families and helped 2,504 individuals/families receive free or low-cost medical coverage through Medi-Cal, 387 individuals obtain health insurance through Covered California, and 323 children ages 18 and under receive preventative and medical care at no cost. In addition, we helped 791 individuals/families experiencing food insecurity with access to healthy, fresh food through CalFresh and 77 at-risk families with supplemental support through CalWORKs

Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), CHI OC made substantial progress, with a growing number of Orange County residents receiving preventive healthcare services, and children getting regular check-ups and immunizations. However, the implications of COVID-19 on the economic, physical, and mental health of our communities has only compounded the situation for our low-income individuals and families, making healthcare access feel out of reach. Our work is not done in Orange County. Helping families navigate the complexities of today’s healthcare system is essential to a healthy community. By connecting children and families with low-cost or no-cost options for health care, we hope to get them the services they need, and in turn create a healthier, more successful future.

CHI OC’s Health Access Assisters and Specialists meet with individuals one-on-one to provide education on the services available to them and their families. Assisters/Specialists assist in navigating health and social service programs, signing up for coverage, making the most of health care benefits, and maintaining coverage.

CHI OC helps individuals determine eligibility and enroll in the following programs:

  • Access for Infants and Mothers (AIM)
  • CalFresh (Food Stamps)
  • CalWORKs (Cash Aid)
  • Covered California
  • Kaiser Permanente Child Health Program
  • Medi-Cal for Adults
  • Medi-Cal for Children and Pregnant Women
  • Medi-Cal for Families (Formerly Healthy Families)