PROJECTS BY AREA OF FOCUS
Linguistic Access to Health Care Study: In an effort to reduce health disparities in San Mateo County, the Health Department turned to us to conduct a countywide study of the level and quality of linguistic access to health care through the public and private system of care. We commenced this study with extensive best practice research on model policies and practices, which was summarized and disseminated. Research activities also included a demographic review, a policy review, a program manager survey, a staff survey, interviews with community leaders, site observations and client focus groups conducted in four languages. Over 50 health care programs and organizations, as well as the major limited English proficient groups in San Mateo County participated in the study. G&A worked with numerous community-based organizations and community leaders to create forums for community members to provide authentic input on the level of linguistic access in San Mateo County. The final report synthesized multiple sources of quantitative and qualitative data and outlined key findings and practical recommendations for the County to improve linguistic access.
Strategies for Preparing Young People of Diverse Backgrounds for Careers in the Health Professions: G&A conducted a research study on K-12 efforts to increase the diversity of the health professions in California. Research focused both on programs, practices, and partnerships that increase minority students’ proficiency in science and exposure to careers in health, so that they may enter a health profession. Secondarily, research aimed to identify effective programs, practices and partnerships that increase minority students’ academic performance and college readiness so that they may access the educational programs required to enter the health professions. Research activities included an extensive literature review, background research, data collection design and implementation, key informant interviews, and a replication guide for health professions, schools and health departments. This report was presented at the Connecting the Dots Initiative Conference sponsored by the California Endowment in 2008.
Mental Health Services Act Research, Planning and Implementation in San Mateo County: G&A recently completed facilitation of a two year-long planning process for San Mateo County’s Mental Health Department to develop its plan for the Mental Health Services Act. In partnership with the San Mateo County Mental Health Services Division, G&A directed the outreach and community input phase with un-served and under-served populations. We designed the focus group protocols and trained all the facilitators responsible for conducting over 100 focus groups targeting linguistically, culturally and geographically isolated communities, as well as populations that do not typically access mental health services (e.g. jail, homeless and aged/isolated populations). G&A coded and analyzed all of these findings and designed an innovative database that allows for reports of findings in relation to 18 different issues. This database also allows reviewers to view the results of focus groups disaggregated by 20 different populations (by ethnicity, region, consumer type, age, etc.). G&A continues to provide consulting services to guide implementation, including meeting facilitation, research on organizational change and leadership development.