Please take action and send a letter to Congress today to support DACA!

 

 

(From our colleagues at California Health + Advocates):

Our Dreamers, including patients and employees, need our help. DACA is due to expire on March 5, and the federal government has yet to agree on legislation that could save nearly 800,000 young immigrants who have been able to live, work, and study in the U.S. under this program.

Please adapt the template below and send to your Members of Congress asking them to pass legislation guaranteeing legal status for these individuals as soon as possible..

TEMPLATE LETTER:

I write on behalf of [health center] in [town].  Our health center provides health care services to XX of your constituents every year.

I am pleased that the budget deal signed into law last week provides two years of mandatory funding for Community Health Centers (CHC), the National Health Service Corps (NHSC), Teaching Health Centers (THC), and the Special Diabetes Program. Our health center can now focus on our mission of providing high-quality health care to any Californian who needs it without having to worry about the expiration of our federal grant funding.

However, I remain deeply concerned about the future for DACA recipients in California and around the country, and I ask you to pass legislation guaranteeing legal status for these individuals as soon as possible.  [If you are writing to a Democrat who voted against the CR last week, add:  I am proud of the stand you and your colleagues in Congress made for DREAMers during Congressional consideration of the CR last week.]  DACA recipients are integral members of our communities.  They are patients, and in many instances, employees of our health centers.  [if you are comfortable, share personal stories about DACA and your health center here]

Thank you in advance for standing up for all Californians. 

 

Sincerely,

 

 

Please join our social media Thunderclap campaign Friday, February 2, 2018!

As many of you may know, Community Health Center’s (CHCs) federal funding expired on September 30th, 2017. Health centers received a short-term funding extension through March 31, 2017, but we still need Congress to #FixtheCliff, and restore our funding so we can continue providing care to everyone who needs it, regardless of their ability to pay. If they don’t act before March 31st, the Department of Health and Human Services estimates that this “funding cliff” will lead to a closure of 2,800 health center sites, 51,000 layoffs of clinicians and other personnel, and loss of access for more than 9 million patients nationwide.

 

Please join our social media Thunderclap campaign – this Friday at noon – and ask Jimmy Kimmel to throw in his support for Community Health Centers!

 

Click here - with a few clicks,  Thunderclap will post on your behalf at the correct time: https://www.thunderclap.it/projects/67410-heyjimmy

Please edit your post by including @JimmyKimmel and @JimmyKimmelLive

FULL FUNDING FOR HEALTH CENTERS NOT INCLUDED IN CURRENT CR

This message is adapted from one from our colleagues at California Health Plus Advocates.

Late last night, President Donald Trump signed a three-week continuing resolution (CR), signaling the end of a partial government shutdown that briefly closed some agency operations over the weekend and yesterday. The Senate passed the CR with an 81-18 vote, and the House approved the measure 266-150 shortly after.

While the CR included a 6-year funding extension for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), the CR did not address Health Center funding, the National Health Service Corps funding or Teaching Health Center funding. House and Senate leadership have repeatedly spoken of their commitment to funding health centers, but they have still not acted on that commitment.

The CR expires on February 8, meaning that as of today, we have 3 weeks to let our Members of Congress know they cannot sit idle, and that they must fix the cliff. Our message to our representatives has not changed and it’s quite simple:

  Funding CHIP without funding health centers is providing coverage without providing access to care. Congress must reauthorize health center funding immediately.

 Advocacy Activities

  • Click here to sign the petition
  • Call your Members of Congress, 1-866-456-3949 and use the simple message above
  • Post on social media: Be sure to tag your representatives
    • .[@Representative] funding #CHIP w/o funding #health centers does not work. People need coverage AND access to health care! Please #FixtheCliff and reauthorize health center funding! #ValueCHCs
    •  

IMMEDIATE ADVOCACY NEEDED!

Congress aims to bring a six-year reauthorization of CHIP next week. As of this moment, NACHC and press reports have confirmed that this extension would NOT include funding for Community Health Centers or any of the other “extender” policies. Congress must provide coverage (CHIP) AND access (community health centers) for all Californians!

 

Here's What You Can Do Right Now:

Click

http://p2a.co/BjjtvNl

to send your Member of Congress a message via email, Twitter, or Facebook.

Covered California Enrollment Open Until January 31, 2018!

 

 

 (Exerpted from Covered California enrollment bulletin 12/22/17)

Covered California Health Coverage Remains

 You may have questions about the federal tax law that was just passed this week. We want to assure you that the benefits related to consumer's Covered California coverage, including financial help to reduce monthly premiums, has NOT changed for 2018. The penalty also remains in effect for 2018 coverage. The only change is the tax penalty will no longer be in effect beginning in 2019.

 Throughout 2018 consumers will still have access to the same quality, affordable health coverage from Covered California that we have been providing since our first Open Enrollment period in 2013.

 What does this mean?

  • For 2018, individuals who can afford health insurance but choose not to enroll for coverage will be required to pay a penalty.
  • Financial Help, for those who qualify, to help lower the cost of health coverage through Covered California REMAINS IN PLACE.
  • Quality Health Care, health benefits and consumer protections such as Pre-Existing Conditions REMAIN IN PLACE.
  • For individuals who do not buy insurance because it would be “unaffordable” for them, in 2018 they will not be required to pay a penalty. Please see tax penalty and exemptions for more information.

 

After the close of Open Enrollment on January 31, 2018, consumers will need to experience a Qualifying Life Event (QLE) in order to apply for coverage.    

 

 

 

 

Thank you to the NORCAL Group Foundation!

 

SFCCC is thankful to have received a generous grant from the NORCAL Group Foundation for our  Street Outreach Services (SOS) program.   SOS provides high quality, non-judgmental health services directly to homeless people in places where they live and congregate.  Traveling in a medical van to sites throughout San Francisco, the SOS team of doctors, nurses, outreach workers, students, and volunteers creates “clinics without walls,” at locations where homeless people live and congregate, e.g., at soup kitchens, on city streets, in parks, and under freeways.  SOS provides urgent medical care, health education, and linkages to primary care and other needed services.  SOS also serves as a clinical rotation site for several health care training programs in the Bay Area, including medical residents and medical and nursing students.

 

 

 

California's Senior Senator on Tax Bill:

“Californians will be hit especially hard by the cap on the state and local tax deduction, making it more difficult for communities to pay for services that our families rely on. It’s no wonder a bill that primarily benefits the wealthy is so unpopular with the American people. They understand this isn’t middle-class tax reform, it’s a middle-class tax hike.”

National Call In Day for Community Health Center Funding

We need members of Congress to make sure they resolve Community Health Center funding BEFORE leaving for winter break.

Fixing the cliff is bigger than just Health Centers, it’s about access to health care…if you didn’t have access to health care could you work? Go to school? Take care of your children or parents? Remind Congress that access to quality primary and preventive health care at Health Centers must come first!

 

 

Here's how everyone can take action today and contact their members of Congress:

 

Call your member of Congress using the toll-free Advocacy Hotline 1-866-456-3949 .

Dial 1-866-456-3949, listen to the Health Center message prompt and enter your zip code to be connected to your Members of Congress. If you’ve already called and heard the message you may enter your zip code as soon as the message begins to skip ahead to Congressional selection.

The system will give you options for which Member of Congress to connect with – you may press option 1, 2 or 3, each corresponding to a different Member – make sure to choose option 3 to connect to your Representative.

Congressional Call Script – Fix the Health Center Funding Cliff

Hi, my name is _________, I’m calling as a __patient/board member/staff member, supporter____ of __Health Center Name__ in ___town____.

I’m calling today about the Health Center Funding Cliff -The Community Health Centers Fund expired on October 1 and as I understand, there is one last chance to fix the cliff before the end of the year.

My Health Center will have to take drastic measures/lay off XX staff/close XX sites/reduce services by XX to deal with this devastating 70% cut to our grant funds, not to mention the blow to our local economy and increase in health care costs as more patients in the community will turn to the emergency room for access.

There are literal lives and jobs at stake, and I am asking that Congress act immediately to attach a long-term fix to the Health Centers Funding Cliff to any year-end legislative vehicle.

Can I count on the Representative/Senator to take action to include Health Center funding in the end of the year package and ensure the cliff is fixed before the end of the year?

I’d like a clear commitment.

Thanks for taking my call – I’ll be watching closely to make sure the Congressman/woman/Senator takes action before the end of the year.Once you've contacted your representative, share this messages on your social media channels and ask your followers to call as well!

 

SFCCC VET SOS Program Receives Generous Foundation Funds in December

SFCCC staff, patients, and companion animals are thankful for several foundations who contributed to the work of VET SOS recently.    These generous grants will allow our SOS/VET SOS team to continue to work with vulnerable San Franciscans to help them with the health of their animals and their own health. 

We thank:

Thornton S. Glide Jr. and Katrina D. Glide Foundation:

North East Medical Foundation:

Gilbert-Wroten Fund:

Important Enrollment Dates

Due To Strong Demand, Covered California Extends Deadlines For Plans Starting Jan. 1 : The number of new consumers signing up for coverage remains ahead of last year’s pace, with more than 38,000 selecting a plan during the past three days.

To sign up for Covered California health care coverage that will begin on Jan. 1. consumers now have until the end of Dec. 22.  Open enrollment in California ends Jan. 31  and enrollment in Medi-Cal is always open. 

Press Conference Re: Health Center Funding Cliff

WHAT: Health center leaders will discuss the dire need for Congress to reauthorize federal health center funding by Jan. 1, 2018 for health centers to continue providing critical access to primary medical, dental and behavioral health care to more than 27 million patients across the nation. Already health centers are experiencing challenges due to the funding cliff that took effect on October 1.   Some health centers are now facing site closures, workforce reductions and elimination of vital services to patients. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has projected that the national impact of the loss of funding will close 2,800 health center locations, eliminate more than 50,000 jobs, and result in loss of access to care for more than 9 million patients.

WHO: Ross Brooks, CEO, Mountain Family Health Centers, Glenwood Springs, CO; Lolita A. Lopez, President & CEO, Westside Family Healthcare, Wilmington, DE; Heather A. Pelletier, Executive Director, Fish River Rural Health, Eagle Lake, ME; Jana Eubank, Associate Vice President, Public Policy and Research, NACHC

WHEN: Monday, December 18, 9 AM  PST

WHERE: Conference call U.S. Toll Free: 800-875-3456 Verbal Passcode (to be given to the operator): NACHC

Contact Amy Simmons Farber, Communications Director, NACHC at asimmons@nachc.org or 301-347-0400 (work) 202-309-0338 (mobile) for more information.  Speaker biographies are available.

U.S. Senators and Patients Urge Funding for the Children's Health Insurance Program

Livestream youtube link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=47vXMByzoaI

 

 

U.S. Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Bob Casey (D-PA), and Mazie Hirono (D-HI) urge Congress to immediately act and extend funding for the Children’s Health Insurance program, which serves nine million children across the country, and community health centers, which serve 26 million patients. Federal funding for both of these programs ran out on September 30th.

 

The Senators will be joined by Connie Cavara, a mother and nurse from Pittsburgh, PA, whose children receive medical care through the Children’s Health Insurance Program as well as Kymberly Renee Grafton, a Naval Reserves veteran who receives health care for a disability at Unity Healthcare, a community health center in Washington, D.C.

The Federal Budget and Community Health Center Funding

SFCCC and our colleagues throughout the country have been working  with our elected officials to ensure that Congress renews the 70% of health centers’ federal grant funding that officially expired at the end of September ( referred to as the "fiscal cliff". )

Yesterday, due to the threat of a government shutdown,  Congress passed a “Continuing Resolution” (CR) that extends government funding for two weeks. During these two weeks Congress has a long list of issues to address.   Federally Qualified Health Centers across the nation will continue to advocate for a long term fix to the "fiscal cliff."  Such a fix would likely be linked to an equally urgent need to extend CHIP, the extremely successful program to provide health insurance to children.

To stay on top of these developments, sign up at http://capca.nationbuilder.com/

Texting Campaign to Promote PrEP

The San Francisco Department of Public Health (SFDPH) is launching an automated PrEP text messaging service. Text “SFPREP” to 213-33 to receive personalized information about PrEP, a daily pill that prevents HIV.

 The goal of the campaign is to provide PrEP education, navigate common PrEP misconceptions and provide a personalized referral to a PrEP provider. This texting service aims to reduce disparities in new HIV diagnoses and will be targeted towards communities of color and trans women.

 For more information please contact Alison Hughes (alison.hughes@sfdph.org) or Hannah Brosnan (hannah.brosnan@sfdph.org).