Clock iconJanuary 24, 2022

New DOJ Grant Further Expands Medical Safe Haven Clinics

For patients who have experienced the trauma of human trafficking, specialized health care services are critical to heal both physically and mentally. Unfortunately, survivors face significant barriers that prevent them from receiving these services, and this can have a profoundly negative impact on their overall recovery. CommonSpirit Health is responding to this need by expanding its Medical Safe Haven (MSH) clinics, which have become a best-practice model for longitudinal health care.

The U.S. Department of Justice’s Office for Victims of Crime recently awarded CommonSpirit Health an $800,000 federal grant to expand its MSH work to three additional residency clinics in Santa Maria, Merced and San Francisco.

This expansion will bring specialized healthcare services to an additional 250 victims of human trafficking over the next three years, increasing survivors’ access to trauma-informed care and to resources that address social needs.

The Medical Safe Haven was started by Dr. Ron Chambers, Jennifer Cox and the Family Medicine Residency program at Methodist Hospital in Sacramento, with support from Mercy Foundation and the Dignity Health Foundation. Due to its success, it expanded to Dignity Health’s Mercy Redding Family Practice Residency Program, led by Dr. Duane Bland, and Northridge Hospital’s Family Medicine Residency program, led by Dr. Pamela Davis.

The three new MSH sites will provide a path to stability and healing for victims of labor and sex trafficking, including males and females and people of all ethnicities, as well as non-English speakers, individuals who identify as LGBTQ+, foster- and justice-involved youth, individuals who lack housing, persons with a disability, and people of all ages. This marks another step toward the goal of establishing MSH within all the residency programs across our system and through partners across the country.

Learn more about Medical Safe Haven Clinics on our website and watch this video to learn more about CommonSpirit Health’s efforts to empower human trafficking survivors through trauma-informed health care.

[1] LPC Consulting, Dignity CASH Study, October 2021.



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