Blog

Campus Messages

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

January 25, 2021
Leadership
UCSF Health

Dear UCSF Community,

After more than four decades of exceptional leadership locally, statewide, and nationally, Mark Laret has informed me of his intention to retire from the University of California at the end of this calendar year.

Mark’s decision caps an incredible tenure at UC, and at UCSF. In 1980, he began his UC career at the UCLA Medical Center where he built the external relations and managed care functions, led the acquisition of Santa Monica Hospital, and positioned UCLA as a leading regional provider of care. In 1995, Mark was appointed CEO at UC Irvine Medical Center in the wake of significant challenges at their fertility center. In that role, he strengthened the management team and built an enduring values-based culture focused on always doing the right thing for patients and the community.

In 2000, we recruited Mark to become CEO of UCSF Medical Center. He joined us as a three-year merger with Stanford Hospital was ending, leaving UCSF in difficult financial and operational circumstances with a depleted management team.

Mark recruited a new leadership team and developed the medical center’s mission, vision, and PRIDE (Professionalism, Respect, Integrity, Diversity and Excellence) values system, all of which endure to this day. With the support of then Chancellor J. Michael Bishop, and in partnership with then School of Medicine Dean Haile Debas and the clinical department chairs, Mark and the team developed and executed a strategic plan to make UCSF larger, stronger, and better able to serve our diverse community.

The fundamentals — quality of patient care, safety, positive patient experiences, health equity, employee engagement, and operational...

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January 21, 2021
Community
Partnerships
UCSF Health

Dear UCSF Community,

We are pleased to announce that this afternoon the UC Board of Regents unanimously approved key provisions that clear the way for us to modernize our historic Parnassus Heights campus.

The Regents vote today caps a years-long effort by hundreds of stakeholders both inside and outside UCSF who provided their input and support to develop the Comprehensive Parnassus Heights Plan. This milestone marks the beginning of a bold 30-year vision to transform our oldest and largest campus into a welcoming destination for our patients and employees, and improve the daily experience of living in the neighborhood.

The Parnassus Heights plan expands the possibilities for our interconnected research, educational, and clinical enterprise. New facilities designed to 21st century standards will allow us to continue attracting the best and brightest learners, researchers, physician-scientists, and clinicians. In so doing, we will ensure UCSF’s ability to drive the innovations that have improved lives for decades and have established our place among the world’s leading academic medical centers.

Among the first projects to start will be the cornerstone of the plan, a new state-of-the-art hospital at UCSF Helen Diller Medical Center that will help us meet the current and growing demand for complex health care. Additional projects that will begin in the first ten years include the new Research and Academic Building, new affordable housing at Aldea for employees and trainees, and a renewed arrival experience on Irving Street. We invite you to...

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January 21, 2021
Community
Partnerships
UCSF Health

Dear UCSF Community,

I am writing to provide you with an update on our COVID-19 vaccine rollout and address some questions on the unpredictability of vaccine availability.

Vaccine Rollout Status Update

Our vaccinations have continued at a rapid pace. In the past month, we have provided more than 23,600 vaccines, and more than 80 percent of our frontline employees and learners have scheduled or received their inoculations. As we continue to schedule vaccinations for the remainder of our patient-facing workforce, we have begun inviting additional employees and our patients, by age groups, in alignment with state guidance.

Vaccine Doses Remain in Short Supply

Federal guidance states that those aged 65 and above are eligible to receive the vaccine, but unpredictable vaccine availability nationwide has hampered the distribution of vaccine doses to such a large group.

Like other health care institutions, UCSF is receiving limited vaccine shipments. The timeline below is based on current assumptions about vaccine availability and may shift as supplies change.

Vaccinating now:

  • Health care workers at highest risk of exposure through their work
  • Patients and employees aged 75 and older

Within the next few weeks:

  • Patients and employees aged 65 and over
  • Employees and learners whose work has required them to be on site at least once a week over the past three months

Expected later next month:

  • Patients, employees and learners in lower age tiers.

We expect to roll out a new scheduling platform for employees and patients in the coming weeks, to make this process...

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January 21, 2021
Administrative
Community
People

Dear UCSF Community,

As a community of over 30,000 students, trainees, faculty, and staff, we come from many different backgrounds, we present different points of view, and we offer unique contributions. Embracing these differences and fostering an inclusive and equitable culture is essential to our individual and collective success. To help us reach our full potential, we will launch the Foundations of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Training module to all UCSF members on January 25, 2021.

The DEI training is an important step we are taking together as an institution to cement our commitment to anti-racism, dismantling systems of inequities, and living the full meaning of our Principles of Community and PRIDE Values.

Developed by the Office of Diversity and Outreach and the UCSF Education Task Force, the training will provide the foundational knowledge and common language to better understand why diversity is core to our work. It will help us identify the actions we can take to promote a diverse, equitable, welcoming, and safe environment at UCSF—for ourselves and, importantly, for all of the patients and communities we serve. All current members of the UCSF enterprise will be expected to complete the training within the next 90 days.

Watch for an email from [email protected] on January 25 to access the training and please visit the...

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January 8, 2021
Community
UCSF Health

Dear UCSF Community,

I am pleased to share with you that UCSF is making steady progress in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout.

As quickly as vaccine availability allows, our goal is to restore all of the critical parts of the UCSF mission by offering vaccinations to all members of our UCSF community—including research, education, and operational/administrative areas—and to begin the important task of offering vaccinations to our patients. We know all of you share this goal and we ask for your continued patience as we systematically roll out our vaccination program.

Once we finish vaccinating employees and learners whose on-site responsibilities involve high-risk exposure to COVID-19, we expect to continue vaccinating the UCSF community in the following order later this month based on our current assumptions about vaccine availability:

  1. UCSF employees and learners whose responsibilities have required them to work on site regularly, including those in research, education, and operational/administrative areas.
  2. UCSF employees who are currently working remotely, beginning with those aged 75 years and older. We are developing our approach for all remote workers and will be sharing more information.

Importantly, as we take the steps above to strengthen UCSF’s full capabilities in service of our public mission, we will begin offering vaccinations to our patients, prioritizing by age, as guided by public health agencies. Patients will be contacted directly when vaccines become available, and they do not need to contact their care provider’s office.

You will soon receive more information on the logistics for the expanded vaccination roll out at UCSF,...

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January 7, 2021
Advocacy
Community
People

Dear UCSF Community,

The attack on the U.S. Capitol Building yesterday was in plain terms an attack on democracy itself—on the will of the people. I am deeply disturbed at what unfolded in our nation’s capital. But I am also resolute in our responsibility to strongly condemn this act and the actions of those who seek to further divide the country.

Despite the angry mob’s attempt to overturn the lawful results of the presidential election, our democratic institutions and process were not deterred, and the will of the people prevailed. The peaceful transition of power was only temporarily disrupted. Congress confirmed the election of President Joseph Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris in the early hours of January 7.

As President-elect Biden reminded us yesterday, democracy is fragile.

This is why we must speak up—to protect and tend to our democracy, for everyone. In this, UCSF has a unique privilege and obligation. We are an institution that exists to serve the public, empowered by the will of the people of California to serve all without bias.

As we have throughout the past year, I encourage you to look after yourselves and one another. If you need support, please make use of the health and well-being resources available to the UCSF community. Also, make time to connect with each other, something especially important as we all continue to manage the challenges of physical distance and isolation.

With the new year come hopeful signs of change. The vaccine rollout will accelerate as supplies and distribution increase, and the incoming White...

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January 4, 2021
Advocacy
Community
Partnerships
UCSF Health

Dear UCSF Community,

With the start of the new year, we are pleased to share with you that UCSF has reached an agreement in principle on a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the City and County of San Francisco on our plans to modernize our Parnassus Heights campus.

Over the past several months, UCSF worked closely with San Francisco on the MOU to align the community investment opportunities that UCSF and the City will collaborate on as part of the Comprehensive Parnassus Height Plan (CPHP).

The MOU includes investments in housing, transportation, and open space, which were among the priority investment areas we identified in dozens of meetings with our neighbors and the UCSF community during our extensive community engagement process over the past two years. It also includes our commitment to expand our long-standing partnerships with the City on community workforce development, education and equity opportunities, and behavioral health services, all in line with our Anchor Institution work.

Read this UCSF.edu story to learn more about the MOU, which UCSF and the City and County of San Francisco announced in a joint statement this morning.

City Commissioners and elected officials will be hearing updates on the MOU in the next week. We look forward to finalizing the MOU as we seek approval from the Regents of the University of California on...

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