October 2021
Adelante: FHCSD’s COVID-19 Response

A Note from the CEO

Greetings FHCSD Supporters,

Just a few short months ago, it seemed we were out of the pandemic woods. Yet today, we continue to face the challenges of COVID-19 and the Delta variant. I’m proud of the strength and resilience our community has demonstrated in the last eighteen months.

I’m also incredibly honored that Family Health Centers of San Diego has made a significant impact in keeping our communities safe – providing over 80,000 COVID-19 tests, over 141,000 vaccine doses and administering over 1,100 monoclonal antibody treatments, the vast majority to minority and underserved individuals.

Today I’m excited to announce the return of our Adelante newsletter. Adelante means moving forward and symbolizes the spirit we hope to embody as we care for our community. Expect a new edition each month. Each edition will include news about our COVID-19 response efforts, special events and other valuable information and resources to keep you updated and informed about all FHCSD’s work.

As we enter the fall – with back-to-school and the football season starting – I urge you to get vaccinated, if you have not already done so, continue to wear masks and stay safe.

Our hope for everyone in our community is not just safety, but prosperity. High vaccination rates mean the virus will not have the time to mutate into more deadly variants.

Welcome back to Adelante!
Fran Butler-Cohen, CEO

Monthly Snapshot Report

Read about FHCSD’s different departments and get a month-to-month snapshot of our efforts since January 1, 2021:

  • Since the start of the year, we have seen over 250,000 patients through over 1 million patient visits. That’s over 4,100 visits per day!

san diego free flu shot clinics for immunization

Since the start of the year, FHCSD has administered over 84,000 COVID-19 tests and over 142,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccinations, or over 500 vaccinations each and every day.

  • FHCSD provides monoclonal antibody treatment and, to date, has treated more individuals than any other entity in the region, with over 1,500 treatments administered to COVID-19 patients.

Laura Rodriguez Research Institute Receives Over $3 Million for Long COVID Study

FHCSD’s Laura Rodriguez Research Institute (LRRI) recently secured over $3 million in grant funding from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to lead research in the effectiveness of multidisciplinary care for patients with persistent COVID-19 symptoms or “Long COVID.”

LRRI is partnering with the University of Washington, University of New Mexico, University of Colorado and ATA Health Strategies to launch the effectiveness-implementation study for a three-year period. Researchers’ goal is to enhance understanding of how to provide multidisciplinary care within a primary care setting for individuals with Long COVID to improve patient care and quality of life.

As prime recipients, LRRI is assuming a leadership role for the largest federal research grant yet awarded directly to the institute.

“This opportunity is a major milestone,” said Fran Butler-Cohen, CEO. “The Laura Rodriguez Research Institute is dedicated to becoming trailblazers in research and making data-driven public health discoveries based on patient needs.”

Established in October 2019, LRRI seeks to conduct responsible, culturally responsive, community-engaged clinical and population-based health research with a special commitment to uninsured, low-income and medically underserved persons.

FHCSD Continues to Provide Monoclonal Antibody Infusions

At FHCSD, our commitment to combat the COVID-19 pandemic remains a priority. Since December 2020, we have offered monoclonal antibody therapy (mAbs), a highly effective treatment that prevents high-risk individuals from developing severe cases of COVID-19. The lifesaving infusion is the first COVID-19 treatment to be granted emergency use authorization by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

FHCSD currently offers mAbs treatment at two facilities in the Central San Diego and South Bay regions. Eligible patients must meet the EUA definition of “high-risk,” have at least one symptom of COVID-19 and a positive test result within the last 10 days.

Our mAbs team can perform same-day COVID-19 tests, followed by a telemedicine visit for evaluation and qualification for therapy. The infusion treatment takes 20 minutes, and then patients are monitored for an hour. Patients can seek treatment at no-cost and are offered treatment regardless of immigration status or health insurance.

Learn more about mAbs here.

Partner Spotlight: Cox Communications

Cox Logo

For years, Cox Communications has supported San Diego with their Connect2Compete programs, which offers affordable internet access to low-income families. In addition to this service, Cox Communications invests in the community through charitable giving, including support of Family Health Centers of San Diego.

In 2020 our partners at Cox, through the James M. Cox Foundation, provided FHCSD with $100,000 in grant funding to aid our COVID-19 response efforts. Additionally, Cox Communications is a Corazon level Spirit of the Barrio sponsor.

To learn more about Cox Communication and their Connect2Compete Program, click the button below.


Employee Highlight: Raul Silva-Martinez

At an early age, I quickly realized I had more questions than answers. Like most children, I turned to my parents for answers, especially my mother. I would ask questions as naïve as, “Why don’t I have superpowers like my favorite superhero?” to questions as profound as, “What kind of impact do I want to have on this world?” I admired how my mother always seemed to have every question in her life answered while simultaneously answering mine. For many reasons, she was my hero.

In my line of work, I get to be that for other people – a hero – and that’s why I chose a career in public health. I wholeheartedly believe that I can be of service to my community and create positive change for others.

Over the past five years, I have worked within FHCSD’s Patient Engagement Department. We are the bridge between our community and our FHCSD clinics, helping patients connect to our life-changing programs and services.

I am proud of how our team quickly adapted to new roles and responsibilities by supporting the COVID-19 testing and vaccination sites throughout the pandemic. What my team does is extraordinary, but more so, how, and why they do it is what moves me. They are selfless and reflect the best this world has to offer – a team that is willing to serve others and make an impact. Despite the uncertainty, personal sacrifices, health risks, new and uncomfortable roles, they chose to serve their community and each other.

I consider myself lucky to work with a team of people whom I consider family and, most importantly, heroes.

Upcoming Events

¡Vive tu vida! Get Up! Get Moving!®
Memorial Community Park | October 16 | 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

This October, Family Health Centers of San Diego will present their annual family health expo ¡Vive tu vida! Get Up! Get Moving!®. This event promotes Hispanic family physical activity and healthy lifestyles for people of all ages and sizes. The event will be held Saturday, October 16 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at Memorial Community Park. Click on the button below to learn more.


Spirit of the Barrio Webinar
The Opioid Epidemic, featuring Dr. Joe Sepulveda

Join us Friday, November 12 for our next Spirit of the Barrio webinar, The Opioid Epidemic with Dr. Joe Sepulveda, Chief of Psychiatry and Medical Director for FHCSD’s Solutions for Recovery Behavioral Health Centers.


Support FHCSD | Support San Diego

If you’d like to support FHCSD and our efforts to care for the community, please consider one of our many ways to contribute. Click below to see how you can help, whether it’s a one-time or recurring monetary donation, or even a car donation.

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823 Gateway Center Way
San Diego CA 92102