208242 Addressing Health Disparities by Sexual Orientation in San Mateo County, CA

Wednesday, November 11, 2009: 12:45 PM

Crispin Delgado, MPP , Health Policy and Planning, San Mateo County Health Department, San Mateo, CA
Jei Africa, PsyD, MSCP , Behavioral Health and Recovery Services Division, San Mateo County, San Mateo, CA
Scott Morrow, MD, MPH, MBA , Health Officer, San Mateo County Health System, San Mateo, CA
As part of the Mental Health Services Act of California, the San Mateo County Health System (SMCHS), California, started to look at creating infrastructure to strategically addressing ethnic and racial disparities. During this process, a few staff started to voice a growing concern over the invisibility of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, and intersexed-identified staff and clients in the system. Thus started the start of the Pride Initiative (PI). PI is committed to foster a welcoming environment for the lgbtqqi community living and working in San Mateo County through an interdisciplinary and inclusive approach. The Pride Initiative has an active membership which meets monthly, and is made up of any County employees interested in participating, as well as contractors and youth. The group also has three specialized sub-committees, which include: Policy and Data, Events, and Clinical Services. PI intends to impact the health disparities faced by the lgbtqqi population by: sharing in decision-making process; prioritizing the needs of the committee and communicating with leadership; reporting trends in community attitudes and behaviors; highlighting local efforts; reviewing outreach materials; disseminating information about the PI to local communities; and providing feedback on materials, reports, curricula, policy, programs, partnerships, outreach, development and funding efforts for the Health System.

Efforts were made to recruit applicants who not only represented diverse ethnic backgrounds, but also diversity in the arenas of gender and other socio-economic factors. Special efforts were also made to encourage youth to participate as part of the San Mateo County Youth Commission.

Learning Objectives:
Describe approach to creating the committee, and its integration into the departmental culture List strategies used to engage employees in the process and garner support from leadership Discuss development of an implementation plan and potential uses for other health departments

Keywords: Mental Health Services, Sexuality

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the chair of the Policy and Data Sub-Committee of the Pride Initiative. I am a Manager in Health Policy and Planning, and I collaborated on the initial creation of the group.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.