Your Health Matters

Spring 2017, In This Issue:

Years ago we enrolled our first member. Our mission that day was to provide superior, affordable health care emphasizing prevention and promoting healthy living to the largest number of low-income San Francisco residents possible. 

Today our mission is the same and now we provide health care to over 145,000 members. With Healthy San Francisco, we offer health care services to over 160,000 residents, or over 19% of the City’s population, which is one in six San Francisco residents.

From our CEO, John F. Grgurina, Jr., our staff, to our provider network, we believe that every person living in San Francisco deserves access to health care. As we get closer to reaching that goal, we are constantly pushing ourselves to create programs that are innovative and that work.

Being a local community health plan has given us great advantages. It lets us support and help our members lead healthy lifestyles. It allows us to support our providers with the care they give. We have earned the Outstanding Performance in Quality Care from the California Department of Health Care Services an exceptional 11 times.

Over the years, we have grown our provider network to eight medical groups and over 3,400 doctors. We have pharmacies throughout the city. We opened a Service Center where any person can go to get information on health care choices that are available for them and their family.

Through the Service Center, our Enrollment Team gives application help for Medi-Cal, CalFresh, Covered California, Healthy Kids, and Healthy SF programs.

We are proud of what we do. We strive to improve the quality of life for the people of San Francisco.

We are honored to be a part of the public face of health care in San Francisco. We will work tirelessly to make universal health care a reality.

San Francisco Health Plan. Here for you. 


There are Care Options for Children with ADHD

Children with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) have more choices of care than just taking medication. Experts found that 3 out of 4 young kids with ADHD are taking medication as part of their care. Many parents worry how medicines affect their child. ADHD has other forms of care than taking medications. Kids with ADHD are urged to get behavior therapy before getting prescribed medicines, or along with medication. Behavior therapy builds the bond between parents and their child.

It gives parents and their children tools to help control the child’s behavior linked to ADHD. Better control means less need for medicines for some children.

Healthier lifestyle choices can also help control ADHD symptoms. Healthier lifestyle choices for kids include:
  • Limiting the time your child spends looking at a smartphone, TV, or computer to only one or two hours a day.
  • Exercising at least one hour daily, like running or riding a bike.
  • Limiting sugar-sweetened drinks, like sodas and juices.
  • Getting 9 to 11 hours of sleep per night.
  • Drinking 7 to 10 cups of water daily.

Behavior therapy and healthier lifestyle choices will help your child manage their ADHD now and as they get older. Medication may help as well but are not your only choice. If you are interested in behavior therapy for your child you can talk with your child’s PCP.

Medi-Cal members can call Beacon Health Strategies at 1(855) 371-8117 to find a therapist who can help you with behavioral strategies to improve your child’s ADHD.

Healthy Kids and Healthy Workers members can call CBHS at 1(415) 255-3737.


Preventing Cervical Cancer

Cervical cancer is a disease most often caused by the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) and can often be prevented with routine PAP screening and HPV testing. A PAP test looks for cells in the cervix that could turn into cancer if not treated. The HPV test checks for HPV infection. Based on your age, you should be screened for cervical cancer every 3-5 years. Ask your PCP what screening is right for you and to see if you need a screening today.

  • Adults who have a cervix age 21-29: get a PAP screening every 3 years
  • Adults who have a cervix age 30-65: get a PAP screening every 3 years or a PAP test with an HPV test every 5 years

Sources: National Institutes of Health,


Create a Safe Sleeping Environment for Your Baby

Sleeping in the same room with your baby can lower the risk of sudden unexplained infant death (SUID). About 3,500 babies die each year from SUID and most happen during sleep. A safe sleep environment can lower the risk of sleep-related deaths.

Experts recommend these safe sleep practices:

  • Placing your baby to sleep on his/her back
  • Using a firm sleep surface with tight-fitting sheets
  • Sharing your room with your baby without sharing beds for the first year of life
  • Avoid using soft bedding (blankets, pillows, or soft toys) and overheating
  • Avoiding exposure to cigarette smoke
  • Caregiver avoidance of alcohol and drug use
  • Breastfeeding
  • Using a pacifier
  • Staying up to date with your baby’s immunizations

Talk to your child’s PCP if you have any questions about safe sleep practices for you and your baby.

Sources: American Academy of Pediatrics,

Do You Have Leftover Medicines in Your Home?

Dispose of your out of date or unused medicines (meds) to avoid harming yourself or others. Experts say that 6 in 10 people have leftover meds at home. Do not flush leftover meds down the toilet or sink. Do not throw leftover meds in the trash. San Francisco has drop-off sites where you can get rid of leftover meds safely.

To dispose of leftover meds:
  • Move any leftover pills to a Ziploc bag (leave liquids in their bottle)
  • Remove any personal information
  • Take to a drop-off site for disposal
  • Recycle empty pill bottles

Many SFHP network pharmacies are drop-off sites. When you get a new med ask your pharmacist about safe disposal of any leftover pills/liquids. For more information, call San Francisco’s Safe Medicine Disposal program at 1(415) 355‑3700 or visit


Provider Online Search Tool

We have made our provider online search tool better. Now it is simpler to find providers in your network or any other SFHP network. You can look up providers by name or the type of provider such as clinics, pharmacies, specialists, and more.

The Provider Online Search tool is just a click away from our home page at You can view the search tool in English, Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, or Russian.

Our quick search lets you search by Provider Name or search by place, network, and general practice type.

You can even define your search by providers who are taking new patients.

After you click “Search Providers” you’ll get your results. You can refine your search by specialty, network, languages spoken, gender, location, and more.

This is just one of the many ways we are making our provider network easier to know and easier to reach.


New Name, Same Service

The General Medical Clinic at SFGH
at 1001 Potrero Avenue has changed their name to
Richard H. Fine People’s Clinic.

All patients of this clinic should keep visiting it for their primary care needs.


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 and Healthy Kids pharmacy formularies.

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


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.