GEMCare is the acronym for Golden Empire Managed Care, a Medical Group. GEMCare was formed as an Independent Practice Association (IPA) in 1992 with 10 primary care physicians and three specialists. These physicians came together and saw a need for another health care option in Kern County. Forming a new group enabled the physicians to contract with the major health plans in California.
Today GEMCare has over 120 primary care physicians and approximately 180 specialists. It services members in Bakersfield and the outlying communities of Delano, Lake Isabella, Taft, Tehachapi and Wasco. Membership has grown from 50 members in November of 1992 to over 50,000 members today. GEMCare is the second largest group in Kern County, second to Kaiser Permanente.
GEMCare has been honored by a number of major health plans for consistently scoring very well on member satisfaction surveys and low number of appeals and complaints. In 1998 Health Net recognized GEMCare as one of the top five groups in California for member satisfaction and quality performance.
In the Fall of 2002 GEMCare ranked as one of the top medical groups in the state of California for providing quality medical care to its members. GEMCare scored in the 87th percentile, among 200 medical groups which were included in PacifiCare's Quality IndexTM profile. GEMCare also ranked at the top of the participating medical group in Kern County. The Quality IndexTM Profile, a public report, rates the performance of medical groups on over 400 measures of clinical and service quality, affordability and administrative accuracy. The survey of the health plan's members covers issues such as quality of care, access to care, preventive care, referral process and length of wait to see a physician.