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San Francisco Health Network
Our Programs

Community Health Equity & Promotion


Who We Are:

The Community Health Equity & Promotion (CHEP) Branch integrates the core public health functions of informing, engaging, educating and empowering community. The goals are to support community well-being, sustain healthy communities, and work toward health equity through sustainable change approaches, community capacity building, mobilization, and community partnerships with a racial and cultural humility lens. Through the use of comprehensive approaches across the spectrum of prevention, the Branch plans, implements, monitors, and evaluates prioritized community initiatives, including promoting active living, safe and healthy environments and community-clinical linkages, and decreasing HIV, sexually transmitted infections, viral hepatitis, and the effects of trauma. CHEP integrates quality improvement into all its efforts, with a focus on achieving health equity through results-based accountability.


Location:

25 Van Ness Avenue, 5th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94102

Contact: (415) 437-6200


Programs:

SAFE AND HEALTHY LIVING ENVIRONMENT


Community and Home Injury Prevention Program for Seniors (CHIPPS)
CHEP staff provide educational presentations, workshops, home assessments, and coordinates small home modifications for San Francisco seniors to prevent injury.

 

Condom Distribution
CHEP purchases male and female condoms and provides them free of charge to any agency or business that wants them. CHEP funds a targeted condom distribution program that provides condoms to San Francisco AIDS Foundation and at bars, gyms, and other venues where gay men, people who inject drugs, and trans women work and play.

Deemed Approved Uses Ordinance (DAO)/Alcohol Prevention
CHEP staff implements the DAO, an ordinance that helps ensure that alcohol sales occur in a manner that protects the health, safety, and welfare of SF residents and communities. CHEP staff educates the community and merchants about the ordinance, including providing linkages to healthy retail opportunities. DAO staff also partner on alcohol prevention collaborations across DPH and City-wide.

 

Drug Users Health
The Drug User Health Initiative is a collaborative, department-wide effort to align services and systems to consistently support the health needs of people who use drugs and alcohol. The four priority areas are: (1) harm reduction education and systems capacity building; (2) overdose prevention, education, and naloxone distribution; (3) syringe access and disposal; and (4) HIV and Hepatitis C prevention, screening and treatment. The vision is that the system of care and prevention supports health equity for drug users and ensures that all people who use drugs are treated with dignity and respect throughout San Francisco. The mission is to support people who use drugs in caring for themselves and their communities through strengthening and aligning services and systems promoting drug user health in San Francisco.

 

Hepatitis B and C Coordination
CHEP coordinates viral hepatitis activities throughout the SFDPH and in the community. CHEP staff actively participate in SF Hep B Free, a community initiative to turn San Francisco into the first hepatitis B-free city in the nation. CHEP also coordinates the hepatitis C prevention, community-based testing, linkage to care, and treatment strategies and activities in partnership with local clinics and community-based organizations. In addition, CHEP provides support to End Hep C SF, a multi-sector collaborative that aims to eliminate hepatitis C in San Francisco.

 

Newcomers CONNECT Project (Human Trafficking Education and Outreach)
The Newcomers CONNECT (Community Outreach Navigation for Newcomer Education Change and Transformation) Project leverages existing complementary work to improve the overall health of San Francisco workers. Through a CHEP and Environmental Health collaboration, the CONNECT Project aims to support vulnerable SF massage and restaurant workers with knowledge and linkage support to a variety of resources, including but not limited to health care access, social and legal services, worker’s rights, and education and ESL opportunities. Linguistically and culturally competent health workers conduct outreach and run groups to spread information throughout the target community. CONNECT staff serve as cultural bridges to ensure that vulnerable workers in SF are able to address the social determinants that impact their health and quality of life.

 

Safe Routes to School
CHEP leads the SF Safe Routes to School Partnership—an initiative to increase safe and active walking, biking, carpooling and taking public transit to and from school. Safe Routes to School also employs Traffic Safety best practices, which focus on the “5 Es” of Engineering, Enforcement, Education, Encouragement, and Evaluation. SF Safe Routes to School is currently in 30 elementary schools, 4 middle and 2 high schools in SFUSD.

Safe Streets for Seniors
Safe Streets for Seniors is a new program of Vision Zero coordinated by CHEP to conduct meaningful education and outreach to seniors and service providers. This will also include community education and engagement in diverse cultures and languages. Additionally, CHEP awards funds to community-based organizations in neighborhoods on the Vision Zero High Injury Network to further educate and engage seniors about Vision Zero.

 

Syringe Access and Disposal Services
CHEP funds a collaborative of community-based organizations that provide client-centered harm reduction syringe access and disposal services to people who inject drugs. Staff work proactively with partners to assist in community engagement and implementation. These programs improve the health of injection drug users and the community at large. Additional components of the program include:

  • A Community Health Response Team that cleans up discarded syringes five days per week in “hot spots,” including the Tenderloin and Civic Center areas and South of Market, and engages with the community regarding proper disposal, provides resources and referrals and Narcan trainings and distribution.
  • Increasing the options for syringe disposal: There are 13 outdoor sharps containers (smaller boxes and larger kiosks) with several more to be installed in the coming months.
  • Collaboration with City agencies, such as the Fix-It Team, Department of Public Works, Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing, and Office of Economic and Workforce Development to address community concerns and conduct syringe clean up.
  • A newly formed Encampment Health Collaborative with syringe providers and city and community partners that provides health care and encampments.

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    Tobacco Free Project
    CHEP Tobacco Free Project (TFP) focuses on developing and implementing tobacco control efforts throughout San Francisco. TFP staffs the San Francisco Tobacco Free Coalition whose members prioritize and lead educational and organizing campaigns for a variety of tobacco control initiatives. The staff also provides technical assistance on policy development to community organizations and policy makers; mobilizes communities through education and social marketing; conducts media advocacy; funds community-based organizations to implement the Community Action Model (CAM); offers “Quit Smoking” (cessation) services; manages data tracking and evaluation of tobacco-related programs and policies; and participates in the SF Health Network (SFHN) systems planning for cessation services. CHEP partners with Population Health Division’s Environmental Health Branch’s Retail Tobacco and Smoking Program, which focuses on enforcement of tobacco control policies, and tobacco product sales licensing, and also offer trainings and technical assistance in the areas of tobacco control and available tobacco cessation resources.

     

    Vision Zero/Traffic Safety
    Vision Zero employs Traffic Safety best practices, which focus on the areas of Safe Streets, Safe People, and Safe Vehicles. CHEP is the SFDPH lead for Safe People, educating the general public about Vision Zero with a special focus on vulnerable populations, such as seniors and youth. As a result, CHEP manages the Safe Routes to School and Safe Streets for Seniors programs.


    HEALTHY EATING AND PHYSICAL ACTIVITY


    Healthy Eating Active Living (HEAL)
    CHEP’s Healthy Eating Active Living (HEAL) Program focus is to reduce and prevent chronic disease health inequities (as it relates to nutrition and physical activity) across the Spectrum of Prevention. The work encompasses policy development, systems/organizational change, coalition building, mobilizing community, and educating providers and individuals. The HEAL team partners within SFDPH as well as with projects, programs, and collaboratives external to SFDPH. The HEAL team works to reduce and prevent chronic diseases by supporting policy, systems, environments and programs that create a culture of health. A key effort of the HEAL staff is to provide backbone staffing for the Shape Up SF Coalition, which has worked for a decade to prevent health disparities by creating the environments, systems, and policies that make the healthy choice the easy choice.

     

    Healthy Hearts SF
    CHEP directs and manages the program operations and provides capacity-building for Healthy Hearts SF, which increases opportunities for free physical activities for African Americans and Latinos, as well as strengthens linkages between the health care system and community prevention resources.

     

    Healthy Retail
    The Healthy Retail SF (HRSF) program grew out of a community-led effort to bring healthier food options to neighborhoods where access to fresh produce and healthy foods is limited. With funding from the Tobacco Free Project, Office of the Mayor, and the Office of Economic and Workforce Development, the HRSF program assists small retailers to re-design their corner store, improve business operations and market their new products to the local community. HRSF is a partnership with the Office of Economic & Workforce Development; CHEP leads community engagement efforts, provides capacity-building to coalitions and merchants and linkages to technical assistance resources including evaluations.

     

    ACCESS TO QUALITY CARE AND SERVICES

     

    Newcomers Health Program
    The Newcomers Health Program is a clinic and community-based health program with the mission to promote the health and well-being of refugees, asylees, and immigrants throughout San Francisco. The Newcomers Health Program provides comprehensive health and mental assessments, health education and linkages to ongoing primary care for newly arrived/status granted refugees and asylees, and victims of human trafficking. Activities include outreach to eligible communities and individuals, providing a cultural/linguistic bridge to primary care with medical and mental health interpreting, education about health and social service benefits and related linkages, and collaboration with many different agency partners at city, regional, state, and federal levels. The program staff provide supportive services to other immigrants as resources allow. CHEP staff also provide backbone support to the San Francisco Coalition of Asylee, Immigrant and Refugee Services (SF-CAIRS).

     

    BLACK/AFRICAN AMERICAN HEALTH

     

    Black African American Wellness and Peer Leadership (BAAWPL)
    The Black African American Wellness and Peer Leadership program funds two organizations (Rafiki and Bayview Y) to achieve the following vision: Achieve health equity and outcomes through a spectrum of prevention activities that address community, individual, and policy and systems changes. The program incorporates these key approaches to the work: trauma informed; holistic health; resident/community driven; outcomes driven; cultural/racial humility and collective impact.

     

    YUTHE (Youth United Through Health Education)
    The YUTHE Program’s goal is to reduce rates of STDs and their sequelae among African American adolescents living in Southeast SF by increasing the utilization of STD preventive services through a peer education outreach intervention model. CHEP YUTHE staff conduct street outreach for African American youth/young adults up to 25 years of age in Bayview Hunter’s Point, Visitacion Valley, and Sunnydale neighborhoods. They provide condoms, lubricants, and referrals and encourage chlamydia/gonorrhea screening at local clinics specializing in youth focused service. Additionally, the YUTHE program provides skills-building workshops for young African Americans at community-based organizations and juvenile detention facilities. The workshops focus on healthy relationships, self-efficacy, and self-confidence around negotiation of sex and other relationship issues, decision-making, STD/HIV 101, and prevention strategies.

     

    HEALTH FOR PEOPLE AT RISK OR LIVING WITH HIV

     

    Community Based HIV/HCV Testing
    CHEP funds community-based organizations and methadone clinics to provide site-based and mobile HIV and Hepatitis C (HCV) testing.

     

    Health Education and Risk Reduction
    CHEP funds programs at community-based organizations to provide HIV prevention services to HIV-negative individuals affected by drivers of HIV infection. Drivers are factors that have been shown to be linked directly to new HIV infections, i.e. cocaine/crack, methamphetamine, poppers, gonorrhea, heavy alcohol use, and multiple partners.

     

    HIV Community Planning Council (HCPC)
    The HCPC is San Francisco’s federally mandated HIV prevention community planning group. CHEP Co-Chairs and provides staff and technical support to the Council. The Council recently integrated with the HIV Health Services Planning Council to improve seamless planning for HIV prevention, care, and treatment services.

     

    Holistic Health to Address HIV Health Disparities
    Four projects address the groups that bear a disproportionate burden of HIV: 1) MSM (men who have sex with men) regardless of race/ethnicity, 2) African American MSM, 3) Latino MSM, and 4) transgender females. The projects are holistic HIV prevention programs with health education and risk reduction (HERR) components that help to link clients to HIV testing, and prevention with positives (PWP) components for those who test positive or are living with HIV.

     

    Prevention with Positives
    Prevention with positives focuses on the health needs of the clients/patients, including linkage to and retention in care, treatment adherence, and sexual and substance use behaviors.

     

    STD Street and Venue-based Community Outreach
    CHEP staff provide venue-based STD and HIV testing for four primary target populations: 1) gay/bisexual men, 2) trans men who have sex with men (TMSM), 3) trans women, and 4) young women 25 and under. CHEP staff conduct street outreach in high STD morbidity areas, providing condoms, lubricants, and information about where to get tested. The CHEP STD prevention program has strong relationships with coffee shops, bars, gyms, bookstores, and other businesses where sex might occur on site. CHEP staff provide education to the business owners and staff on STDs and help build their capacity to be part of the STD prevention effort.

     

    Trainings and Workshops
    HIV and STD trainings and workshops are provided to case managers, HIV and STD counselors, and others at community-based organizations and clinics.