With the start of a new year often comes opportunity for reflection. As I look back on the end of 2022 and plan for 2023, I'm reminded of how well and quickly we can respond when challenges arise.
Last week, an atmospheric river was headed straight for the Bay Area, threatening heavy rain, potential flooding and high winds.
Such extreme weather is dangerous for anyone, but it is particularly dangerous for people experiencing homelessness.
Many Contra Costa Health (CCH) employees assisted in our response to the storm to help keep our communities safe and healthy. The coordination between CCH, county partners and the Office of Emergency Services serves our community well and we are grateful to be part of this team.
Our Health, Housing and Homeless (H3) Services team immediately jumped into action by expanding CORE mobile outreach hours and staffing, increasing capacity at shelters and warming centers, and assisting the Red Cross' emergency shelter effort.
With support from DOC Logistics and HazMat, H3 also ordered and distributed hundreds of sleeping bags, ponchos, tarps, blankets and more.
I'm grateful to HazMat, Environmental Health and Behavioral Health who sent staff to support H3's outreach effort. And to Public Health and Health Care for the Homeless staff who went out to assess health needs.
With another round of storms rolling in, H3 is keeping up the pace to ensure people experiencing homelessness have resources and supplies. You can read more about their efforts in CCH's press release.
I also want to extend my gratitude to staff at Contra Costa Regional Medical Center (CCRMC) for quickly addressing several water supply issues at the hospital in mid-December.
CCRMC's facilities team, admin team, the CCRMC Command Center and Public Works coordinated a rapid response to quickly address the problem. They identified two issues: the hot/cold water-mixer line malfunctioned and one of the hot water tanks failed.
While the necessary repairs were made, they brought in bottled water and portable handwashing stations, and had Public Health test water samples to make sure it was safe for drinking.
No matter the situation, CCH staff consistently leap forward to provide innovative support, solutions and care. As I look around, I see a community that pulls together during a challenge.
I am constantly appreciative of the passionate and dedicated people I have the privilege to work with every day, and I look forward to overcoming any challenge we'll face in 2023 together.
With deep appreciation,
CEO, Contra Costa Health
Contra Costa Health earned state recognition for advancing high quality, equitable care for people in our communities.
At their annual conference on Dec. 8 in Napa, the California Association of Public Hospitals (CAPH) and the California Health Care Safety Net Institute (SNI) awarded CCH the 2022 Quality Leaders Award in the Population Health category.
CCH's entry, titled Patient Engagement Using Data Insights, showed how we combined data and outreach calls to bring people in for preventive care, which many people either delayed or skipped throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
CCH established a coordinated outreach strategy using our electronic health record (EHR). In conjunction with making real-time data accessible through the EHR, we leveraged a team of interns to conduct outreach calls that addressed each patients' specific needs.
With this approach, we were able to place more than 5,000 calls per month and ensure people were coming in for the care they need.
Thank you to CAPH and SNI for the important recognition.
A 25-member team of employees from across the department is meeting regularly to come up with recommendations for improving diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) at Contra Costa Health.
The team has been holding a series of "roadmapping" work sessions since the fall with the assistance of the Justice Collective, a local equity consulting firm, and our own Equity Team in the Office of the Director. The team will hold its final roadmapping session at the end of January at which point it will identify measureable equity goals for the department to consider adopting.
The roadmapping work is the latest step in the department's efforts to advance DEI goals. The process began over a year ago and hundreds of Contra Costa Health employees have participated in an online survey, listening sessions, focus groups and interviews. Many community members also participated in listening sessions through our Historically Marginalized Communities Engagement group.
You can read the Justice Collective's equity assessment report and listening sessions summary from last year on iSITE.
Contra Costa Health is preparing to migrate all our network-connected devices, including employees' computers and laptops, to a new domain managed by CCH's IT Department.
This move will provide us with better security and stability for our information technology systems and user accounts.
The migration will happen in stages and will require the participation of all staff. IT will be scheduling groups of users to migrate their devices in the coming weeks.
Individual employees will be directly notified at least 7 days in advance of their scheduled migration date and be provided with detailed instructions on what they need to do.
The migration process typically takes 5-10 minutes for someone to complete. Please keep an eye out for upcoming correspondence regarding the migration.
CCH, in collaboration with the Contra Costa Continuum of Care, is gearing up for the 2023 Point in Time (PIT) Count at the end of the month and we need volunteers.
The PIT Count provides a one-day snapshot of homelessness in Contra Costa. It impacts funding and includes data about families, youth, chronically homeless, veterans, as well as gender, ethnicity and race.
Volunteers help make the PIT Count successful and we need about 30 more. Volunteers will canvass across the county to count the number of people experiencing homelessness in our community. You don't need any special experience. You can volunteer by using your leave, with the approval of your supervisor.
Volunteer for the 2023 PIT Count
Wednesday, Jan. 25
5:30 – 9 a.m.
Join certified KonMari consultant Jenna Carlson for a free primer on Marie Kondo's tidying magic.
WHEN: Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023 from 12:10 p.m. – 12:30 p.m.
WHERE: On Zoom (Passcode: wellness)
WHO: Open to all, including CCH employees
Service Excellence Awards
Service Excellence Awards acknowledge the care, skill and compassion Contra Costa Health employees bring to work each day.
I am excited to recognize the incredible work being done at CCH and acknowledge employees who have gone above and beyond for each other and our communities.
Please join me in celebrating and thanking each person who has been nominated.