Turning great ideas into healthier communities


How California health departments are advancing health equity: Lessons learned on community, collaboration, and communication

June 21, 2018 | Katherine Schaff, Berkeley Media Studies Group

It wasn't that long ago when health departments began to ramp up their message that racial and health inequities exist and must be addressed. New case studies from PHI's Berkeley Media Studies Group show how much progress health departments in California's Monterey, Napa and San Mateo counties have made toward addressing racial and health inequities through innovative solutions, community power-building, and effective communication.

One common theme that runs through each of the case studies: Strong communication starts with community collaboration and partnerships.  more

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Press Releases

New study finds only slight increase in marijuana use after legalization

June 19, 2018

A new assessment of marijuana use in Washington State published by PHI's Alcohol Research Group found only a 1.2 percentage point increase in past year use after recreational marijuana was legalized—suggesting that a previous report showing an increase of 3.8 percentage points may have been overestimated due to respondents underreporting their consumption when marijuana was still illegal.

"If our study better represents how often people used the drug, marijuana legalization’s short-term impact on use in the state may have been quite small," said William C. Kerr, lead author and senior scientist at the Alcohol Research Group.  more

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Sign-on letter: Public health implications of family separation at the border

June 21, 2018

As organizations committed to protecting the public’s health and championing the health of all people, we are deeply concerned by the treatment of the families seeking asylum at the United States-Mexico border. We are alarmed by the environment that has materialized as a result of the Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” policy and we worry that this has set the stage for a public health crisis.  more

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Announcements & Events

CA HiAP Task Force Identified as “Key Enablers of Successful Cross-Sector Collaboration to Improve Population Health”

June 08, 2018

Over 100,000 inmates in California now have lower-sodium foods due to new nutritional criteria that have been applied to 45 state food purchasing contracts. That's one of the impacts from California's innovative Health in All Policies Task Force, a collaborative project between the Public Health Institute, the California Department of Public Health, and the California Strategic Growth Council. The Task Force is the focus of a new case study from the Center for Health Care Strategies, which uncovers opportunities to facilitate state-level, cross-sector strategies that promote health beyond the traditional health care levers.  more

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PHI in the News

The doctor will see you now – online. Virtual house calls offered widely in Sacramento region

June 22, 2018 | Hannah Holzer | The Sacramento Bee

House calls are making a comeback, with a virtual twist: Three of the Sacramento region's four major health providers – Kaiser Permanente, UC Davis Health and now Sutter Health – offer video visits with primary care providers. Telemedicine technology has been adopted rapidly, and health care companies are seeing a growing number of people who are not only willing, but demanding, to consult medical professionals online.

Mei Kwong, head of PHI's Center for Connected Health Policy, tells The Sacramento Bee that patients don't have to pay for things like parking if they're doing a home visit or additional fuel costs if they're consulting from a rural hospital. They are also able to take less time away from work, and they are likely to see a provider sooner than if they waited for a face-to-face appointment, meaning they are diagnosed earlier and can be served by less-costly treatments.  more

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