Newsletter Archive

Your Health Matters

Spring 2018, IN THIS EDITION:

SFHP’s Medicaid (Medi-Cal) HMO program has earned a three year “Accredited” status from the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA).

NCQA Health Plan Accreditation measures the services of a health plan. It measures how well health plans give care to their members. They also measure the care our doctors and hospitals give. They review the quality of the care we give. They also review how we work to make that care better.

We are now a part of a select group of Medi-Cal health plans in California that have earned this ACCREDITED status.

This success is rewarding since it acknowledges both the quality of care that SFHP and our providers give our members and the hard work of our focused staff to reach this status.

Over 145,000 of our members have health care. With Healthy San Francisco, the City’s non-insurance health care access program, SFHP offers services to over 160,000 residents, or over 18% of the City’s people, which is 1 in 6 San Francisco residents.

We believe that all people living in San Francisco deserve quality, affordable health care. Our focus is making San Francisco a city that offers universal health care and every year we get closer to that goal.

We look forward to continuing to serve our members with the best health and wellness care.


There is No Safe Level of Smoking

People who smoke as little as one cigarette a day are still at high risk for heart disease and stroke. Many smokers think that smoking fewer cigarettes does not lead to harm. Experts have found that light smoking is still bad for your health. Smokers need to quit completely if they want to avoid diseases caused by smoking. Using other tobacco products, like cigars, pipes, hookahs, and e-cigarettes, is not recommended. Just as there is no safe level of smoking, there is also no safe form of tobacco, including e-cigarettes.

Need help to quit smoking? For free phone counseling, self-help materials, and online help in six languages, call the California Smokers’ Helpline at 1(800) 662-8887 or visit


High Quality Care for SFHP Members

SFHP wants all members to have access to high quality care. One way to reach this goal is through our Quality Improvement Plan and Evaluation. This plan explains:

  • What SFHP is doing to make sure members have better access to health services and quality of care.
  • Our yearly goals and what we do to reach them.
  • How well SFHP met those goals.

In 2018, SFHP wants to improve access to high quality care by focusing on:

  • Cervical cancer screenings for eligible adult members.
  • Encouraging members to seek help for anxiety, depression, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).


Learn about Shingles and the Shingles Vaccine

Shingles, also known as zoster or herpes zoster, is a painful skin infection caused by the varicella zoster virus. This is the same virus that causes chickenpox. If you’ve had chickenpox, you are at risk of getting shingles. Adults 50 years or older should talk to their provider about getting the shingles vaccine. The shingles vaccine can help prevent getting shingles and the long-term pain it can cause.

Adult vaccinations, including the shingles vaccine, are available to SFHP members through the pharmacy benefit, in addition to your provider’s office. Call your provider to find out if the shingles vaccine is right for you.



SFHP now Offers Palliative Care for Medi-Cal Members

Palliative care is for Medi-Cal members with advanced serious poor health. This care can help members have the best possible quality of life. Palliative care focuses on the physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, and social issues that can happen with advanced illnesses.

The care involves pain and symptom management, mental health and social work services, and religious and spiritual support. This care offers advanced care planning that can help make decisions about your future health care.

Palliative care is not the same as hospice. You do not have to be at the end of your life to get palliative care. You can get palliative care and other care that could help treat your advanced disease(s) at the same time.

Palliative Care Hospice Care
For patients with a serious illness causing pain and worry (physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social) even while they get care meant to treat their disease. For patients who need care during their last 6 months of life once they have stopped treatments meant to treat their disease.
Goal is to help a patient live the best quality of life possible. Goal is helping a patient die comfortably and with dignity.
Gives help with coping with a diagnosis or with sticking to the health care plan. Provides physical, spiritual, and emotional support to the patient and offers comfort to their loved ones.
SFHP services focus on care given in the member’s home. SFHP services give care where the member lives or in a hospital or licensed nursing place.

Palliative and hospice care are covered services for SFHP Medi-Cal members. By the Bay Health delivers these services.

Talk with your doctor if you want to know more about palliative care. If you have questions call SFHP Customer Service at 1(800) 288-5555 (TDD/TTY 1(888) 883-7347).

This care is for Medi-Cal members only.


Save Time with 90 Day Supply

Going to the pharmacy every 30 days to pick up a prescription can be hard. It’s even harder if you have to pick up more than one. Did you know that you can get 90 day supply prescription refills? SFHP approves 90 day supply refills on most prescriptions, so you don’t have to go as often. If you take medication for a chronic condition, remember to ask your doctor or pharmacist for a 90 day supply.

Make an Appointment

Our Service Center can help you fill out and submit your Medi‑Cal application. Call Customer Service at 1(415) 777‑9992 to get started. The Human Services Agency determines who qualifies for the Medi‑Cal Program.

Changes have been made to the San Francisco Health Plan Medi‑Cal, Healthy Workers HMO and Healthy Kids HMO pharmacy formularies.

To view our most recent updates, please go to If you cannot access the internet or have any questions about which medicines are covered, please call Customer Service at
1(415) 547‑7800 or 1(800) 288‑5555 (toll-free).

SF Benefits Net Enrollment Site

Find out if you are eligible for Medi-Cal, Food Stamps, School Meals, and other benefits.
1440 Harrison St.
Monday – Friday
8:00am to 5:00pm
Walk-Ins welcome.
Call SF BenefitsNet at
1(855) 355-5757.