Timely access to care

Having timely access to care is extremely important to us. Take a look at the tables below so you can plan ahead.

Appointment wait times

Urgent appointmentsMaximum wait time after request
No prior authorization required48 hours
Prior authorization required96 hours
Non-urgent appointmentsMaximum wait time after request
Primary care physician (excludes preventive care appointments)
Behavioral health care physician (psychiatrist)
10 business days
Non-physician behavioral health care provider (for example, a psychologist or therapist)10 business days
Specialist (excludes routine follow-up appointments)15 business days

Ancillary services (for example, x-rays, lab tests, etc. for the diagnosis and treatment of injury, illness, or other health conditions)

15 business days

Exceptions to appointment wait times

Your wait time for an appointment may be extended if your health care provider has determined and noted in your record that the longer wait time will not be detrimental to your health.

Your appointments for preventive and periodic follow-up care services (e.g., standing referrals to specialists for chronic conditions, periodic visits to monitor and treat pregnancy, cardiac, or behavioral health conditions, and laboratory and radiological monitoring for recurrence of disease) may be scheduled in advance, consistent with professionally recognized standards of practice, and exceed the listed wait times.

Telephone wait times

ServiceMaximum wait time
  Sharp Health Plan Customer Care
  (Monday to Friday, 8 am to 6 pm)
  10 minutes
  Triage or screening services
  (24 hours/day and 7 days/week)
  30 minutes

Interpreter services at scheduled appointments

We provide free interpreter services at scheduled appointments for members whose primary language is not English. For language interpreter services, please call Customer Care at 1-800-359-2002. The hearing and speech impaired may dial 7-1-1 or use California’s Relay Service’s toll-free numbers to contact us:

You must make requests for face-to-face interpreting services at least three (3) days prior to the appointment date. In the event that an interpreter is unavailable for face-to-face interpreting, Customer Care can arrange for telephone interpreting services.

Concerns about timely referral to an appropriate provider

You can contact Customer Care at 1-800-359-2002 for assistance if you are unable to obtain a timely referral to an appropriate provider. You can also contact the California Department of Managed Health Care at 1-888-466-2219 to file a complaint.