SFMMS Community Service Foundation

Doctor standing by window

The SFMMS Community Service Foundation—a charitable 501 (c)(3) organization—serves to collaborate with other community health organizations on projects such as tobacco and anti-smoking education, TB control and prevention education, child immunization and other child health and safety programs, violence prevention, AIDS education, and more.

In the physician professional and educational programs arena, projects have included exploration of critical ethics and bioethics issues, drug education, science, and policy; environmental health; quality assurance programs to support physicians to maintain physician/patient relationships within the context of managed care; efforts to support the community-based component of medical education, education and policy on other public health and confronting domestic violence, to cite a few.

Project Examples

Domestic Violence

The SFMMS CSF funded the development of the SFMMS guidelines on domestic violence screening and intervention. This brochure represents a concise and clinically-based approach to this complex issue, and distills knowledge from existing, much-longer documents. The brochure has been widely distributed and well-received by clinicians city-wide and beyond and was cited in the Journal of the American Medical Association as one of the best resources on this topic.

Medical Ethics

The SFMMS CSF has worked to address the chronic problem of a shortage of organ donors via development of new policy and practices in this arena, utilizing funds provided by the Wallace Alexander Gerbode Foundation. We have developed new policies on end-of-life issues as well and are working to increase and improve the use of POLST, the Physician Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment form.

Cancer in the Chinese Community

The SFMMS CSF was the first fiscal intermediary and partner in a multi-year project to research and improve the incidence of and response to cancer in San Francisco’s large Chinese community. We received a grant from the National Institutes of Health via the University of California, and renewed funding for a second five-year period.

Medical Ethics

The SFMMS CSF was the recipient of a grant from the Walter and Elise Haas Fund and the Wallace Alexander Gerbode Foundation for the development of new approaches to the issue of medical futility. The procedural model for this project was a previous effort also funded by these foundations to develop consensus guidelines on physician-hastened death. Both of these resulted in work published in the Western Journal of Medicine and have served as a template for hospital policies and have been widely discussed in the media, including on the front page of the New York Times.

Drug Policy and Education

The SFMMS CSF served as grantee for funds from the Open Society Institute for national conferences on the drug MDMA (“ecstasy”) and “New Approaches to Drug Education,” both of which drew hundreds of attendees from around the nation.

Environmental Health

A national conference on “Environmental Health in the New Century”, held at the University of California, San Francisco, drew a capacity crowd of over 400 and resulted in the formation of a national network of professionals and patients involved in the field, called the Collaborative on Health and the Environment.

Antibiotic Resistance

A conference hosted and funded by the SFMMS CSF resulted in a policy statement on overuse of antibiotics in agriculture which was published and widely discussed; a coalition of health groups working on this issue has supported more rational national policy.

Pallative Care Project

The SFMMS CSF received a two-year, $40,000 grant from the California Health Care Foundation (CHCF) and Metta Fund to continue and expand our outreach and educational efforts to improve palliative care in San Francisco and beyond, with a focus on the POLST form as a means of increasing use of advance directives.

CSF Funding and Distributions

The SFMMS CSF has served as a conduit for funds to and from funders and community organizations for various projects, including most of the efforts above and more. Donations are tax-deductible.