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Blue Shield of California Foundation Announces $11.9 Million in First-Quarter Funding

New grants will support activities & organizations at the intersection of healthcare and domestic violence, and advance innovation across the safety net

San Francisco, CA (March 25, 2014) — Today, Blue Shield of California Foundation announced $11.9 million in first-quarter grantmaking. Many of these grants are focused on integrating the fields of healthcare and domestic violence (DV) in California. With only 124 DV organizations across the state, engaging the healthcare system is essential to meeting continued demand for services.

"In order to achieve our vision of a California free from domestic violence, we must expand the way in which we address and prevent it," said Peter Long, Ph.D., president and CEO of Blue Shield of California Foundation. "The Affordable Care Act provides a strong platform to improve and increase domestic violence screenings. These grants support important new partnerships that will create additional access points for individuals and families at risk for domestic violence. "

In addition to cross-sector collaborations, the Foundation is also targeting funds to advance innovation in the safety net. Within a rapidly changing healthcare landscape, new models and tools are needed in order to improve the quality and cost-effectiveness of care for the underserved. This quarter’s grantmaking aims to help safety net providers succeed in this new environment by supporting activities that enhance their ability to deliver coordinated, integrated, and sustainable care.

This round of grantmaking also includes the approval of 2014 core operating support, to be awarded as grants later this year. These flexible funds enable community health centers and domestic violence service organizations to respond to challenges and opportunities as they arise, while continuing to provide for California’s most vulnerable residents.

A break-down of first-quarter grantmaking is as follows:

Health Care and Coverage ($7,325,145)

To drive innovations that help health centers become more integrated and patient-centered, the Foundation is investing in a series of grants to promote new approaches and partnerships across the safety net. These funds deepen past Foundation investments in proven collaborations that advance the way in which community providers work together to manage care for their patients. Grantees include:

  • Golden Valley Health Centers (Central; $155,000)
  • Health Plan of San Joaquin (Central; $155,000)
  • Monterey County Health Department (Central; $155,000)
  • Alliance for Rural Community Health (North; $155,000)
  • Mountain Valleys Health Centers, Inc. (North; $155,000)
  • Open Door Community Health Centers (North; $155,000)
  • Community Health Center Network, Inc. (San Francisco Bay Area; $155,000)
  • Petaluma Health Center, Inc. (San Francisco Bay Area; $155,000)
  • Local Initiative Health Authority for Los Angeles County (Los Angeles; $200,000): To enhance an existing eConsult system that enables virtual appointments with specialty care providers in Los Angeles County. The grant aims to further expand patients’ access to behavioral health services and evaluate the impact of the virtual tool on the local safety net.

In effort to address the needs of the remaining uninsured, the Foundation is investing in a series of grants that provide stakeholders with resources to encourage counties and the state to expand access and improve safety net services and systems for the remaining uninsured. Grantees include:

  • National Health Law Program (Statewide; $100,000): To develop research and policy solutions to improve access to care for those not eligible for coverage under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA).
  • Community Clinic Consortium (San Francisco Bay Area; $134,392): To support the development of local strategies to ensure access to health care for uninsured residents of Contra Costa County.

To continue fueling California’s leadership in developing new payment models for safety net providers, the Foundation is awarding three grants to support key thought leaders in accelerating the state and national conversations around payment reform. Grantees are as follows:

  • John Snow, Inc. (JSI) Research & Training Institute (Statewide; $173,481): To support the planning and implementation of payment reform models through new research, technical assistance, and policy solutions for California’s CHCs, public hospitals, county health systems, and policymakers.
  • Integrated Healthcare Association (IHA) (Statewide; $199,772): To enable IHA to deepen its collaboration with safety net organizations on performance measurement and help develop strategies to advance payment reform in the safety net.
  • National Association of Community Health Centers (National; $250,000): To support the development of a patient risk assessment tool and standardized protocol that goes beyond medical acuity to account for the socioeconomic risk factors that impact health.

With over 10 million residents, Los Angeles County faces unique and significant ACA implementation challenges. To continue to drive enrollment in Medi-Cal expansion in Los Angeles and capture successful enrollment stories from the region, the Foundation is supporting the following grantees:

  • Neighborhood Legal Services of Los Angeles County (Los Angeles; $150,000): To support a collaborative private-public effort to coordinate outreach, enrollment, and retention of individuals newly eligible for healthcare coverage under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) in Los Angeles (LA) County.
  • Families USA Foundation, Inc. (Statewide; $102,500): To capture successful Medi-Cal enrollment stories in California as a result of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) and to use them to promote successful implementation of the ACA.

In response to the continued need for tools and analytics to help health centers effectively use financial data, the Foundation is releasing the following grant:

  • Capital Link, Inc. (Statewide; $150,000): To provide community health centers (CHCs) with data analysis, training, and technical assistance to increase their understanding of key financial metrics and develop strategies to improve their overall financial performance.

To support state-level innovation, the Foundation is supporting the California Health and Human Services Agency (CHHS) through the following grant:

  • Public Health Institute (Statewide; $125,000): To provide research and technical assistance around the design process of the California State Innovation Model (CalSIM), and inform a newly-established CHHS workgroup focused on improving health homes for complex patients, and creating accountable care pilots.

As part of the Foundation’s ongoing efforts to support California’s safety net system, its trustees have also approved $4,500,000 in core operating support to be granted to community health centers across the state in 2014.

Blue Shield Against Violence ($3,700,000)

To improve access to DV screenings and services for all survivors, these grants support new partnerships and projects that connect DV and health service providers. Funding aims to bridge the divide between these two sectors and help achieve a more integrated system of care across the state. Leading this important work are the following grantees:

  • Center for a Non Violent Community (Central; $210,000) to partner with Mathiesen Memorial Health Clinic in Tuolumne County Family Assistance Program (South; $210,000) to partner with the Department of Public Health in San Bernardino County
  • Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center (Los Angeles; $210,000) to partner with Interval House in Los Angeles County
  • The Children's Clinic, Serving Children and Their Families (Los Angeles; $210,000) to partner with Su Casa and WomenShelter of Long Beach in Los Angeles County

To support the success of these partnerships and support learning along the way, the Foundation is investing in:

  • Futures Without Violence (Statewide; $435,000): To develop a learning network and provide technical assistance for domestic violence and healthcare partnerships, and support learning and evaluation of integrated service delivery models.

Additional Blue Shield Against Violence grantees are as follows:

  • East Los Angeles Women's Center (Los Angeles; $200,000): To expand the capacity of California communities to implement the Promotoras model, a culturally competent approach for increasing access to domestic violence (DV) services among primarily low-income, Latino communities.
  • Asian Women's Shelter (San Francisco Bay Area; $150,000): To enhance the Multilingual Access Model (MLAM), a promising domestic violence (DV) service innovation that provides language support and advocacy in over 40 different languages to improve access to DV services for limited-English-speaking survivors from underserved communities.
  • TechSoup Global (Statewide; $75,000): To optimize and expand access to SafeNight, an innovative internet app that engages donors in new ways to provide domestic violence (DV) survivors with emergency, on-demand shelter.

Building upon the Foundation's longstanding commitment to California's domestic violence service providers, its trustees have also approved up to $2,000,000 in core operating support to be granted to DV organizations across the state in 2014.

Additional Grants ($888,485)

Outside of its traditional programmatic areas, the Foundation is also investing in a number of unique projects that aim to advance the Foundation’s mission and vision. These grants include:

  • Futures Without Violence (Statewide; $261,869): To use opportunities available through the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) to raise awareness about the health impacts of exposure to violence, and help heal youth exposed to trauma through public engagement, policy changes, and the transformation of social norms and practices.
  • Full Circle Fund (San Francisco Bay Area; $50,000): To launch a pilot project that will inform the development of a Health Circle that will provide capacity-building assistance to safety net organizations and engage emerging philanthropists in supporting healthcare safety net issues.
  • Orange County United Way (OCUW) (Orange County, $401,616): To create a collaborative county-wide outreach, referral, education, and enrollment infrastructure to help ensure that more uninsured OC residents gain healthcare coverage and have the information needed to access their new covered benefits.
  • Project HOPE - The People-to-People Health Foundation, Inc. (Project HOPE) ($175,000): To support the publication and dissemination of research, commentary, and analyses related to health reform implementation in California and other states, and its evolving impact on safety net systems through the monthly journal, Health Affairs.

About Blue Shield of California Foundation

Blue Shield of California Foundation is one of the state's largest and most trusted grantmaking organizations. Our mission is to improve the lives of all Californians, particularly the underserved, by making health care accessible, effective, and affordable, and by ending domestic violence. For more information visit: www.blueshieldcafoundation.org. Blue Shield of California Foundation is an independent licensee of the Blue Shield Association.