Blog

Campus Messages

An archive of email messages sent to the entire UCSF community by the Chancellor and members of the Chancellor's Cabinet.

July 12, 2019
Advocacy
Community
Emergency

Dear Members of the UCSF Community,

We are deeply concerned about the impact of current immigration policies on our institution, our city, and our nation.

Like many of you, we are heartbroken by the unprecedented humanitarian crisis at our nation’s southern border. As we first stated a year ago, we are extremely troubled by the separation of children from families, and we denounce any mistreatment of migrants in detention centers.

We are also very concerned by media reports that suggest U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials plan to initiate nationwide raids targeting undocumented migrant families.

We condemn these policies that discriminate against and dehumanize immigrants and undocumented people in our country. Research from our own faculty shows that people, especially children, suffer devastating and chronic consequences to their health due to both short and long-term exposure to traumatic experiences.

As a public university, UCSF is committed to improving health for all people, and we will continue to provide care without regard to ethnicity or citizenship status. We are working with community-based partners to advance local initiatives, such as the UCSF Center for Immigrant and Family Health to provide high-level leadership, advocacy, research, and training focused on the immigrant patients we serve. We also will continue to provide a safe and supportive environment for our immigrant learners, faculty, and staff.

We urge everyone to unite around our shared PRIDE Values and to stay...

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July 3, 2019
Advocacy
UCSF Health

Dear Colleagues,

The Trump Administration has announced plans to increase enforcement actions against undocumented immigrants by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) after the July 4th holiday. Media reports name San Francisco as one of the target cities.

I want to be clear: UCSF Health cares for all patients, regardless of immigration status, and we will continue to do everything possible to make every patient and family feel safe and welcome in our organization. I also want you to know how you should respond if ICE officers enter our facilities and request information about patients and families.

We have a public mission to deliver safe, quality and equitable health care, without regard to a person’s ethnicity or citizenship. We can only do so if patients are able to seek our care without fear and have trust in our providers.

We do not collect information about immigration status or report undocumented individuals, and we never release patient information without authorization by the patient or without being required to do so by law.

If a federal immigration officer requests information or records about our patients, or gives you a warrant or subpoena seeking records or information, you should take the following steps:

  • Ask the officer's name, identification number and agency affiliation;

  • Ask for a copy of any warrant or subpoena presented;

  • Inform the officer that you are not obstructing the process but need to contact UCSF Health Legal Counsel at 415-476-5003 for assistance.

    ...
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July 3, 2019
Administrative

Dear Members of the UCSF Community,

We are writing to share a brief summary of results of the 2019 UCSF Staff Engagement Survey conducted in May. Thank you to all of the staff who voiced your opinions. This survey is important because it helps us understand your experiences at work and our progress toward our shared goal of making UCSF a great place to work.

We achieved 72% participation across the UCSF campus and UCSF Health West Bay, an overall increase of 2% compared to last year. We also continue to have a very slight improvement in staff engagement. Our grand mean score, on a five-point scale, increased by .02 to 3.96 in 2019, compared to the .01 increase between the 2017 and 2018 surveys. While these are improvements, we remain far from our goal to be among the best organizations in the country.

The 2019 results also show where we must continue to focus efforts. The gap between populations of employees who are more and less engaged remains significant, although our latest results show it has narrowed slightly.

The positive news is that staff remain steadfast in their strong connection to the UCSF mission and their dedication to quality work. Additionally, teams who engaged in action planning and made meaningful progress on those plans showed higher overall engagement again this year.

Highly engaged staff correlate to positive improvements in all areas of an organization. We are making progress and know there are two key ways that everyone at UCSF can contribute:

  • First, we encourage managers to communicate your results with your teams, set goals, and implement action plans throughout the year. You can find resources on the...
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June 20, 2019
Leadership
People

Dear Colleagues,

I am writing to inform you about several upcoming changes to the Office of Strategic Communications and University Relations.

Vice Chancellor Barbara J. French will retire from UCSF on June 27, after 14 years of exemplary service. As head of Strategic Communications and University Relations, Barbara has provided invaluable counsel to me and my leadership team as well as former chancellors on issues related to communications, media relations, brand stewardship, government affairs, and community relations. She has led an award-winning team in elevating how we tell the UCSF story to our communities and to the world during a critical period in the growth of our enterprise.

Under Barbara’s leadership, University Relations has played a crucial role in advancing UCSF’s strategic priorities, including fostering constructive relationships with Mission Bay and Dogpatch residents to inform and support the expansion of UCSF programs; partnering with Parnassus Heights neighbors to create and adopt a 20-year Mount Sutro Reserve Management Plan and lay the groundwork for engaging the community in the re-envisioning of our historic Parnassus Heights campus; engaging communities in Oakland and Alameda County in support of UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals; revitalizing and strengthening the UCSF brand identity system; developing UCSF’s presence across a broad and rapidly changing digital landscape; collaborating to create opportunities for San Francisco residents to relaunch...

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June 18, 2019
Honors and Awards
UCSF Health

Dear Colleagues,

We are proud to announce that UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals have again ranked among the nation’s preeminent children’s hospitals in all 10 pediatric specialties evaluated by U.S. News & World Report, which released the results of its annual Best Children’s Hospitals survey today.

Together, our two hospitals in Oakland and San Francisco ranked fifth nationwide and best in the West in neonatology, and were recognized as the best in Northern California in pediatric cancer care; cardiology & heart surgery; gastroenterology & GI surgery; and neurology & neurosurgery. We also scored highly in five other specialties surveyed: diabetes & endocrinology; nephrology; orthopedics; pulmonology; and urology. More information, including our complete rankings, is available in the press release.

We are especially excited to see significant improvement in many of this year’s standings compared to last year’s survey results. Of particular note, our 2019-2020 rankings increased in seven specialties from the prior year, with a leap of six places in neurology & neurosurgery, and more than 15 places in cardiology & heart surgery, and orthopedics.

The importance of these results is twofold. First, the rankings continue to reflect the high-quality care we provide to our patients and their families. And second, our improvement across so many fields in one year’s time indicates the marked progress BCH has made in coming together as a unified children’s health enterprise.

...

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June 5, 2019
Advocacy

Dear UCSF Community,

UCSF strongly opposes today’s abrupt decision by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to discontinue intramural fetal tissue research by scientists at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The efforts by the administration to impede this work will undermine scientific discovery and the ability to find effective treatments for serious and life-threatening disease. Fetal tissue is used in important research aimed at discovering cures for illnesses that affect the lives of millions of Americans, including Alzheimer’s, spinal cord injury, eye disease, and HIV.

At UCSF, today’s action ends a 30-year partnership with the NIH to use specially designed models that could be developed only through the use of fetal tissue to find a cure for HIV. UCSF exercised appropriate oversight and complied with all state and federal laws. We believe this decision to be politically motivated, shortsighted, and not based on sound science.

UCSF will continue to collaborate with the UC Office of the President, as well as with other universities, science associations, and affiliated organizations, to advocate for sustained federal funding of fetal tissue research with Congress and the Administration.

Sincerely,

...

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June 4, 2019
Advocacy
Community

Dear UCSF Community,

This month, members of our community will come together to celebrate Pride Month and mark the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall uprising that sparked the modern LGBTQ rights movement.

UCSF unequivocally reaffirms its support for the LGBTQ community. Our unwavering commitment to protect the fundamental rights of the LGBTQ community is especially crucial today in the wake of several federal actions that would roll back basic human rights, including access to health care and homeless shelters. Among them:

  • The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) proposed a regulation on May 24 that removes current anti-discrimination protections for transgender Americans from the Affordable Care Act (ACA), asserting that discrimination on the basis of sex should not include gender identity. The proposal essentially says that gender identity is not protected under federal laws that prohibit discrimination in health care.
  • The HHS released a...
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June 3, 2019
UCSF Health

Dear Colleagues,

We are pleased to announce that we will welcome our first patients at the new UCSF Bakar Precision Cancer Medicine Building (PCMB) at Mission Bay on June 24.

The PCMB embodies the most advanced and compassionate model of translational medicine available and represents UCSF’s commitment to patient-centered care. By bringing together researchers, clinicians and staff to provide supportive care in a building where we will offer immunotherapy, molecular profiling, and genetic counseling, we are setting a new standard for personalized cancer care and research in the Bay Area.

The six-story, 170,000-square-foot facility will serve as the heart of outpatient solid tumor care at UCSF. Designed with the help of our patients and clinical teams around the patient experience, the PCMB will be home to clinical experts and support providers, including dieticians, social workers, psycho-oncologists, genetic counselors, and symptom management and integrative medicine. On September 9, we also will open a new Cancer Acute Care Center dedicated to reducing visits to the emergency department and readmissions due to treatment side effects.

The PCMB places patients and families at the center of a new generation of precision medicine, which tailors care based on each individual’s biology and life circumstances. The building is situated within steps of the UCSF Bakar Cancer Hospital and the Mission Bay research building for the Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, which will enhance collaborations between researchers and clinicians to accelerate new treatments and speed them to patients.

UCSF is a world leader in precision medicine, which aims to yield new...

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May 29, 2019
Partnerships

Dear UCSF Community:

Partnerships with peer institutions and industry leaders are an important part of our strategy to accelerate our work across all of UCSF’s mission areas. When considering these relationships, we must ensure that potential partners can sufficiently protect and safeguard any sensitive data we share as part of our collaboration.

A task force comprising UCSF leaders in research, technology, and operations has been working to better understand the unique opportunities and challenges confronting UCSF in regard to our collaborations and partnerships with external entities that include sharing sensitive data. Generally, the task force recommended streamlining the process for setting up external collaborations and establishing efficient oversight of certain types of relationships that involve sharing sensitive data.

The work to implement these recommendations is underway. The first step is to activate an interim process to flag high-risk data sharing proposals for review by the UCSF Enterprise Information and Analytics Committee (EIA) led by Dr. Jennifer Grandis. Specifically, prior to executing a contract, our designated contracting teams will forward to the EIA proposed partnership contracts that involve:

  • Sharing any UC-protected health information (PHI) outside of IRB-approved clinical trials
  • Sharing sensitive UCSF data with high-risk countries or companies
    • Identified using Restricted Party Screening software from Visual Compliance® and information from government and law enforcement authorities (e.g., FBI)
  • ...
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May 28, 2019
Partnerships
UCSF Health

Dear Colleagues, Friends, Concerned Citizens:

Over the past several weeks, and in particular at the recent meeting of the UC Board of Regents, we have seen and heard hundreds of thoughtful, principled, and impassioned statements about UCSF’s proposal to expand our relationship with Dignity Health’s four Bay Area hospitals.

Many of you have expressed strong concerns about a significantly expanded UCSF relationship with a health care system that has certain limits on women’s reproductive services, LGBTQ care, and end-of-life options. Meanwhile, many of you have been adamant that UCSF must build on its decades-long affiliation with Dignity Health in order to provide critically needed health care services to our Bay Area communities.

We respect and appreciate the diversity of opinions from multiple stakeholders both within UCSF and outside our University, and we have heard you all. In the past several days, we have met internally, with Dignity Health, and with leaders both in the University of California Office of the President and the Regents. Given the concerns, we will not continue to pursue the affiliation as it had been envisioned, which would have created a stronger link between UCSF Health and Dignity Health’s four Bay Area hospitals.

What remains true is that the critical patient needs that have driven our discussions with Dignity Health still exist, and we have a responsibility to meet them. Going forward, we will continue to work to identify a path to help meet those needs and increase access to crucial health services. We will develop solutions that address many of the concerns we have heard. We are particularly sensitive to addressing the unique needs of women,...

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