Peer Support Services
In September of 2020, Senate Bill (SB) 803 (Beall, Chapter 150, Statues of 2020) was chaptered, requiring DHCS to seek federal approval to establish Peer Specialist as a provider type and to provide distinct peer support services under the SMHS and DMC-ODS programs. While services provided by peers can currently be claimed under the provider type "other qualified provider" within the SMHS program, and recovery services provided by peers can be claimed within the DMC-ODS programs, DHCS is proposing to add peers as a unique provider type within specific reimbursable services and to allow counties to opt-in to provide this valuable resource. By July 1, 2021, DHCS will determine the peer certification standards in alignment with the provisions SB 803 (Beall, Chapter 150, Statutes of 2020), and in accordance within CMS' guidance, have the new benefit in place by January 1, 2022.
Timeline (Subject to Change)
- November - Disseminate BHIN 20-056 on funding sources currently available for Peer Support Services
- January - Peer Support Listening Session (see below for details)
- March - Peer Support Listening Session (see below for details)
- April - Behavioral Health - Stakeholder Advisory Committee Meeting
- June - July - Disseminate initial BHIN on Peer Support Specialist Certification Program Standards
- August - December State technical assistance for Peer Support Specialist Certification Program Standards available to counties - more information to come
- July - Obtain federal approvals for Peer Support Services reimbursement
CalMHSA was identified to submit an implementation plan on behalf of interested counties opting into the peer certification program. The submission of an implementation plan must be submitted to DHCS by November 19, 2021. CalMHSA will be holding a community input session starting October 5, 2021, to gather input from the community on specific topics for program implementation. The sessions are virtual and run for 1.5 hours. Spanish interpretation will be available for all sessions. For more information visit:
California Mental Health Services Authority | Peer Certification (calmhsa.org)
DHCS presented on the implementation of SB 803 Peer Support Services in the Drug Medi-Cal Organized Delivery System (DMC-ODS), Drug Med-Cal (DMC), and Specialty Mental Health Services (SMHS). For more information on implementing Peer Support Services in DMC-ODS, DMC, and SMHS, see:
Frequently Asked Questions
Frequently Asked Questions on Peer Support Specialists
CalAIM 1115 Demonstration and
BHIN 21-045 Drug Medi-Cal Organized Delivery
System (DMC-ODS) Peer Support Services
Fiscal Plan Guide
BHIN 21-041 Medi-Cal Peer Support Specialist
Certification Program Implementation
BHIN 20-056 Peer Support Services: Available Funding
Senate Bill 803: Mental Health Services: Peer Support
Medi-Cal Code of Ethics for Peer Support Specialists
BHIN 22-026 Drug Medi-Cal (DMC), Drug Medi-Cal Organized
Delivery System (DMC-ODS) and Specialty Mental Health Services (SMHS) Peer
Peer Support Specialist Listening Session #1 - Friday, January 22, 2021, 10 a.m. - noon
Peer Support Specialist Listening Session #2 - Tuesday, March 2, 2021, 1 - 3 p.m.
Peer Support Specialist Listening Session #3 - Monday, June 28, 2021, 10 a.m. - 11 a.m.
Questions and comments may be submitted by email to
This inbox is targeted to questions and comments related to the implementation of SB 803. For general inquiries regarding existing peer support services, trainings, or other resources please contact your
local county mental health plan.