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SF kicks off Gas-Free Fridays

June 30, 2010

Furlough Fridays may be history, but Gas-Free Fridays have only just begun. The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is urging city residents and commuters to avoid internal combustion engines on Fridays in July by cycling to work, shop and play. Half of all trips in the city are under two miles, the coalition says, and most of those can be easily done by bike.

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Flood of new patients forces SF General to innovate

April 11, 2010

For hospital administrator Roland Pickens, Healthy San Francisco offers more than universal health care and coverage for the city’s uninsured. The three-year-old city program also is inspiring new approaches to streamlining medical care. Pickens, chief operating officer of San Francisco General Hospital, said the city health care program has led to innovations that include evening and weekend clinics, better care of patients with chronic conditions, electronic referrals that speed up the appointment process and a teleconferencing system that has doubled the availability of interpreters. The hospital has come up with new ideas out of necessity. Its caseload has mushroomed with Healthy San Francisco; more than 8,000 patients have chosen the public hospital as their medical home.

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This employer supports health care mandate

April 4, 2010

The Nibbi Brothers construction company is a big supporter of San Francisco’s nearly universal health care program, even though it includes a mandate on employers to provide benefits to their workers. Bib Nibbi, the company’s president, says the law levels the playing field with companies that bid against him and win by slashing their labor costs. The city, he says, should avoid a “race to the bottom.” Fifth in a series by Healthy Cal contributor Richard Paddock.

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For universal health care, but not on his shoulders

March 28, 2010

Daniel Scherotter, a restaurant owner and chef, is leading the fight against Healthy San Francisco. It is not that he opposes the health care program. He simply thinks the city’s businesses, particularly restaurants, should not be required to finance universal health care. Fourth part of a series by HealthyCal contributor Richard C. Paddock.

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In San Francisco, a rush for health care

March 20, 2010

A San Francisco clinic that serves the poor was flooded with new patients when the city created its Healthy San Francisco program. Now the doctor who runs the clinic is preaching prevention for those patients. Third in a series on universal health care in San Francisco. By HealthyCal contributor Richard C. Paddock.

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SF not liberal when it comes to smoking

March 10, 2010

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors has voted to ban smoking at sidewalk cafes, restaurant patios, movie and ATM lines, bingo halls and the common areas of housing complexes. San Franciscans will also be prohibited from smoking near the doorways and windows of offices, shops and restaurants.

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Health reform is already here — in San Francisco

March 7, 2010

The overhaul of America’s health care system may be stalled in Washington, but in San Francisco, a new method of delivering health care is already in place. Known as Healthy San Francisco, it is designed to care for the poor and under-served. It provides universal access to health care, comes with a public option, and has no exclusion for prior medical conditions. HealthyCal.org contributor Richard C. Paddock has the first part of a series on the program and the people it serves.

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Art therapy in the Tenderloin

March 1, 2010

The Community Arts Program in San Francisco’s Tenderloin District offers free art studio space and supplies — as well as a place to get off the streets and get creative — to more than 30 people per day, five days a week. It is run by Hospitality House, a non-profit that has served the homeless and low-income populations of the Tenderloin since 1967. HealthyCal contributor Paige Bierma offers this video profile.

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Newsom: Public Health faces $102 million deficit

February 18, 2010

San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom warned the city’s Health Commission this week that the Department of Public Health could be facing another $100 million in budget cuts. This in a department that runs a hospital, San Francisco General, where the elevators are 30 years old and are run without a regular service contract.

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