Our Strong Safety Net
You may or may not be aware that thousands of people across Sonoma County have neither the money nor the transportation to access the basic medical services most of us take for granted. This problem is huge and growing: Children need cavities to be filled, moms-to-be need prenatal care, and senior citizens need healthcare services. I’m proud to say that St. Joseph Health – Sonoma County is undertaking a Herculean effort to reach these community members and help them lead healthier lives.
At a time when some hospitals are scaling back on their charity care, St. Joseph Health– Sonoma County is as committed as ever to its Community Benefit Department. Last year we invested nearly $2.3 million in free community outreach programs for people who have nowhere else to turn. We will not reduce this commitment, because it is a core value of our institution and part of the fabric of our mission.
Recently I spent a day with the dozens of people who run our Community Benefit programs, and it was an eye-opening experience to witness the amazing and indispensable work they do. My hope is that you can come away with the same understanding after you read about our Community Benefits programs. Read profiles of several of our programs, including pediatric dentist Cheryl Willett’s work at our dental clinic, the Neighborhood Care Staff, Circle of Sisters, and St. Joseph Hospice and Palliative Care services. What’s important to note is that our health system’s charity isn’t focused on merely providing free medical care—we’re working to build healthy, safe, and connected communities where people can thrive and grow.
I hope these stories convey the impact we’re having on peoples’ lives, and I hope they inspire you to take action and help your community in a positive way.
St. Joseph Health
Northern California Region