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2011 Top-Rated Nonprofit

San Diego County Medical Society Foundation

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Community Health Systems, Health, Medical Research

Mission: Improve community health & wellness, access to care for all, and support for physicians through engaged volunteerism.

Programs: The foundation's program consist of the following three initiatives:project access san diegothe foundation is in support of local organizations that provide direct care to the neediest of our community. By recruiting physicians who wish to donate thier services, helping to connect the needy to low-cost special care, or providing direct financial support to these organizations. The foundation is committed to playing an active role in solving this community-wide problem. The foundation recruited over 600 physicians who provided donated services directly to local organizations totaling $1,386,418 for the year ended september 30, 2014. The 2014 pro bono care has been included in income and expenses and are normalized at medicare rates. Contract servicesthe foundation provides support for physicians through technical assistance for the adoption of electronic health records. Medical student supportby expanding the original mission of the organization, the foundation provides scholarships to medical students and new residents serving in san diego county.

Community Stories

39 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Thank you to Project Access for providing specialty procedures and surgeries to patients from our Free Clinic Project. We are grateful for your services to our patients and for your commitment to making these services happen. It means a great deal to our project, our team, and our patients.
Thank you.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As a physical therapist here in North County, we have been voluntering to assist Project in providing services to their clients.
This organization serves a very important and much needed service to all of San Diego.
They are well organized, efficient and deserve increased revenues that will allow them to help keep the cost of medical down in San Diego.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Gift of site given to the uninsured mothers, fathers, sons, and daughters of our community through this program is a great testimony to its effectiveness.

Wish this program continued success.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have seen indigent patients as a volunteer physician for the San Diego County Medical Society's Project Access. This charity is very well organized and effective at making sure patients receiving free care through their volunteer physicians and hospitals are truly in need and have no other resources. The patients I've treated are extremely appreciative and Project Access is indispensable in setting up the ancillary services patients need but cannot afford. This is a most rewarding endeavor, for the patients as well as the volunteers!

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Our Surgeon volunteers her time to perform surgeries for Project Access Patients. It is extremely easy for our office staff to set up the Patient's consultation and surgery with the help from the Project Access staff. The Patients are always prepared and on time when they come to our office. It has been a pleasure to provide a much needed service to the Patients of Project Access. We enjoy volunteering to help people in our community and Project Access does an amazing job facilitating our volunteer services. Project Access is an asset to the people of San Diego.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Project Access is an amazing organization. They make it very easy for our doctors at ENT Associates of San Diego to volunteer and help the people in our community that dont have access to medical care.
We are proud to be part of such an organization

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 3

My job as a volunteer was a traslator, it's is so important than patients can understand their Doctor 's instructions of how to take care of themselfs after surgery, how to contact their Doctors in case of complications and follow up appoinments and or treatments.
I feel so good that I was able to help and be part of that important task.

Review from Guidestar

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Project Access San Diego makes a great difference in the lives of the uninsured in the county. Without Project Access patients in dire need of care would suffer, needlessly. I am eager to see how the program will grow throughout the community in the future.

Review from Guidestar

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

As someone with health insurance, I can only imagine what it feels like to not have access to care. The Medical Society Foundation does a fantastic job providing assistance to those who cannot afford healthcare, helping families by allowing them to get back to work and take care of themselves.

Review from Guidestar

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

During the healthcare debate I started to research what options are available to patients without healthcare and I came across The San Diego County Medical Society Foundation. What an amazing resource for people without insurance to gain access to specialized healthcare.

I often think what it would be like to have a specific problem and not be able to help and after reading about The Society Foundation they are doing incredible things to help people solve that problem.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 3

I am an ENT specialist. I welcome the opportunity to give back to the community by volunteering for Project Access San Diego through the San Diego County Medical Society Foundation. Project Access arranges for free transportation and translation services and provides me with the necessary medical information for the patient.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As an Administrator of a health plan that offers Managed Medi-Cal, I am happy to help provide coverage to those in need within our community. However, not everyone qualifies and Project Access has been invaluable in providing much needed care to those with no other options. They have been very successful in forming strong collaborations between physicians and facilities within San Diego who work together to provide vital services to those that need it most.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I feel truly honored to care for my patients through Project Access. Because these women have significant medical problems, they are sincerely grateful for the medical care and treatment. I am impressed with the workup that has been done before they see me, the records that are sent, and the translator they bring with them to help the process. Project Access makes it simple to order labs, send specimens to pathology, and arrange for hospital coverage of care. I am so grateful for the kind notes of gratitude from these special patients. I have been looking for a way to give such care for years, and Project Access has made it happen.
Thank you.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

From a primary care physician or clinic staff: “The Medical Society Foundation is a great resource for community clinics in San Diego who are looking for access to specialty care for the underserved in our community. Last year, one of my uninsured patients was seen through Project Access, where she received a life-saving surgery that she would not have received otherwise! I always look forward to working with Project Access!”

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a member of a dermatology group that sees Project Access patients I feel privileged to be able to help those in the community who are having skin problems that require specialized care but who do not have the resources to see a dermatologist on their own.
The patients we have seen have had challenging problems that we fortunately were able to resolve, greatly enhancing their quality of life and giving us volunteer dermatologists great professional satisfaction. Thanks to Project Access San Diego for developing this program. One of the specific examples was a woman who had a widespread rash that proved to be a contact dermatitis, cured when the offending substance was discovered and eliminated from her life.

Review from Guidestar

Donor

Rating: 5

As a provider of a medical diagnostic test (EMG/NCV) I have had the opportunity to work through Project Access, and their staff is very professional in processing the patient referrals to our office. Even though we provide only one of the tools used by their physicians to aid in the diagnosis of patients, we are very much an entegral part of the overall services patient's receive. All communication, scheduling, patient transportation, and follow-up have been handled smoothly in each case we have been a participant.

Review from Guidestar

Board Member

Rating: 5

I am a 79 year old retired general and vascular surgeon who was a board member of the San Diego County Medical Society Foundation until my three terms were up last September. I have personally assisted Patient Access San Diego, a program administered by the Foundation, in obtaining volunteer physicians and other providers of medical care for patients who are carefully screened for need. I attended a daylong Kaiser surgery center session where over 100 volunteers provided surgical services for people who could not obtain work without correction of their surgical defect. Throughout my career I made it a precept that those in need of surgical services should receive them from caring physicians and other medical personnel whenever they were unable to pay through no fault of their own.
As a child of eight I had free care from the County of San Diego for a serious injury to my right arm. We were poor, and the care was free. In large part it was this experience that prompted me to become a physician and motivates activities such as Patient Access San Diego.
Ralph R. Ocampo, MD FACS

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As a medical provider, it's important to me that my patients receive adequate care. When my patients don't have medical insurance and require expensive testing or specialists, this is almost impossible. If it weren't for San Diego County Medical Society Foundation many of my patients would not receive the care, studies, or procedures they need. I refer patients to this program almost daily, and I'm not sure what I would do without it. In fact, I feel strongly that this program is saving our local ERs a significant amount of money - as this is where most uninsured patients end up when they have no other option.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Providing medical care to the uninsured poor is a major challenge. San Diego is blessed with an excellent network of community health centers providing primary care to those in need. But what to do if the client needs a specialist physician? The Medical Society Foundation through Project Access enlists specialists to volunteer their time and to persuade the facilities where they work to do the same. This collaboration saves lives, restores function, and is a beacon of hope in the quest for equality in medical care. 476 clients were helped in 2010.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

The programs that the San Diego County Medical Society Foundation have offered to community clinics immensely help our patients. We thank you for this.

Review from Guidestar

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am a primary care MD in a Community Health Center. All of our patients are at or below the 200% of Federal Poverty Level, and more than 1/3 have no health insurance at all. One of the most frustrating, disheartening, and demoralizing things that happens to me almost daily is to know what a patient needs and not be able to offer it to them because they are poor, or to offer it and have them tell me 'no thanks, i cannot afford it'. Sometimes these are life-or-death decisions. Having Project Access has been a great thing for both the patients and the primary care physicians treating them- now, when we previously had nothing to offer, we can offer hope and a tangible result that many times is life-saving or life-changing.
Two of my patients have literally had their lives saved by Project Access, and many more of my patients have avoided permanent disfugurement, morbidity, and/or severe pain due to Project Access. They are a godsend!

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As an Orthopedic Surgeon, providing care for patients with pain or deformity in the musculo-skeletal system often requires more than an office visit. It requires a trip to the operating room and assurance of post-op visits. The value of the Project Access supported by SDCMS is their ability to pull together partners from the community (OR rooms, all the nursing and anesthesia staff) to make it happen. A great resource for those in our community who have fallen through the cracks.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As a primary care physician taking care of uninsured patients in San Diego, I can honestly say that Project Access San Diego has changed the way I practice medicine. It's hard to imagine that just over a year ago they didn't exist. We must have over 50 patients who have gotten care from PASD. They review our applications promptly, coordinate our patients care from start to finish and ensure they receive the care they need. Our patients are very satisfied. I see people every day whose quality of life was improved due to PASD.

Review from Guidestar

Board Member

Rating: 5

It is gratifying to see first-hand the miracles that happen for patients who otherwise would not have access to specialty or surgical care. The ability to talk, have a job or live pain free are all taken for granted until those 'gifts' are taken from us. How does one place a price on restoring a person's dignity--the simple answer is what Project Access does--they restore their ability to be independent and lead productive lives.

Review from Guidestar

Donor

Rating: 5

It has been a pleasure to work with Project Access San Diego through the San Diego County Medical Society. They send us unisured patients who need medical attention and would otherwise be able to get help. The patients come directly to our office and are provided with transportation and even translation services. The staff at Project Access is professional, friendly and always easy to work with. It has been a wonderful opportunity for our office to "give back" to the community.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The San Diego County Medical Society Foundation is a great resource for professional like me to share my expertise and serve the underserved population in my community . I specially enjoy the smiles and the appreciation I recieve from patients who needs care but unable to afford the surgery cost due to economic reason. I am so glad that we can make a difference in our community and I don't have to travel so far to be involve in such a cause.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The gratification I receive from treating needy patients through San Diego County Medical Society Foundation's Project Access is unparalleled. The appreciation patients with awfully crippling arthritis show is worth far more than any copayment or insurance reimbursement can provide. The program facilitates the scheduling, visit and follow up in the comfort of our own office, lessening the burden of time required to see these patients in other settings. This program reminds me of the basic reasons I chose medicine as a career.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It is wonderful that my patient who loses insurance no longer has to go to a clinic and leave our Family Practice in order to access specialty care. Project Access makes it possible for me to continue caring for them and have coordinated referrals made to doctors, surgery centers and ancillary care willing to provide free care for those who need it. I am very grateful.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

PASD is the hallmark of physician specialty giving in San Diego, virtually hassle-fre for physicians and their staff and a treasured gift to the patients treated.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Project Access helps many of our uninsured patients access medical specialty care that would be out of their reach otherwise. We are so thankful for the services that are offered by the volunteers and the amazing work staff does to make sure that the patients of the community health centers are served. Thanks to all of you.

Review from Guidestar

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

We at 2-1-1 San Diego are very thankful to have Project Access to refer our uninsured and underinsured clients to. With so many individuals and families having complex health needs, Project Access is many times the only service available to assist them. Their staff and leadership are very professional and have built solid community partnerships to ensure that the program is a success. As far as I know Project Access is the only one of it's kind, making it a "must have" vital resource for our community!

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I love helping those who would not otherwise have access to rheumatology specialty care. Project Access San Diego through the Medical Society Foundation provides me the pertinent medical records, laboratory and imaging information, transportation and translation services so I can examine the patient in my office and return them with my treatment plan to their PCP. And I know they will get the needed medications for my treatment plan. It's much easier for me to see uninsured patients in my own office than to travel to volunteer my services. Thank you PASD for this wonderful opportunity to serve my community.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

San Diego County Medical Society Foundation's Project Access provides much needed volunteer medical care to the uninsured and uninsurable people in San Diego. With out this type of volunteerism by surgeons, radiologists and medical specialists diseases could progress to life threatening illnesses.
I am proud to be a surgical volunteer for Project Access. Patients come fully vetted and with complete records. When needed they are accompanied by a translator. The service is very well run and very easy for my office staff to interface with. Its service leaves us all feeling good about what we do.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I really like volunteering for Project Access San Diego through the Medical Society Foundation in order to provide specialized gynecological care to those who need it most. I feel like I have really improved the lives of these women who often come from challenging situations. Project Access arranges for free transportation and translation services which makes it very easy for me and my staff. They also provide me with all the necessary medical information for the patient in a convenient and legible form. I feel like I am making a difference.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a surgically oriented dermatologist I have been providing services to needy individuals without health insurance through "project access," a terrific program set up by our San Diego County Medical Society Foundation. The patients we helped had problems that were treatable with relatively simple surgical procedures that could be done in my office surgical suites. It gave me a great deal of satisfaction to be able to be of service to these patients and I'm grateful to the foundation for setting up such a valuable program. It allows San Diego physicians to express by their actions the principles which motivated many of us to become physicians in the first place.

Review from Guidestar

Donor

Rating: 5

Project Access San Diego embodies what not-for-profit healthcare does best, at its essence. They help people who otherwise would not receive care to get access to the right care, at the right time, from the right professionals, without regard to their ability to pay. Their healthcare access coordinators help low-income San Diegans navigate the highly confusing, disjointed healthcare system so that they can get lifesaving and life-enhancing care from highly regarded professionals who are volunteering their services. My hats off to the physicians and staff of San Diego County Medical Society Foundation for providing this much-needed, highly beneficial service to those in San Diego who otherwise wouldn't have anywhere to turn.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Foundation has made it easy for me to volunteer my services as a radiologist. The recently implemented eConsult site allows me to conveniently and securely make recommendations to clinicians about the appropriate imaging of their patients. It would be difficult for me to volunteer in my specialty without this program. I highly recommend Project Access to San Diego physicians who want to help take care of our neediest citizens.

Review from Guidestar

Donor

Rating: 5

Project Access, a key program of the San Diego Medical Society Foundation, offers valuable, timely and life-saving services to many people in San Diego County who have no where else to turn for comparable services. The program is well-run and has excellent client feedback.

Review from Guidestar

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I love volunteering for Project Access San Diego through the Medical Society Foundation. It is so easy for me to see uninsured patients in my own office rather than traveling a far distance to our rural communities. Project Access arranges for free transportation and translation services and always provides me with all necessary medical information for the patient. I am thrilled to have found this volunteer opportunity.”

Review from Guidestar