To establish the Benioff Children's Hospitals in Oakland and San Francisco as the preeminent network for pediatric care, we need the contributions of our entire BCH community. In the interest of reinforcing our shared focus on the health care needs of our patients and their families, the information below seeks to help set the record straight on some rumors that are raising questions and leading to misunderstandings.

Strengthening BCH Oakland's financial health

 Rumor  Fact
The affiliation is harming BCH Oakland's financial health. The opposite is actually true. The affiliation rescued BCH Oakland after years of being financially vulnerable.
  • Since 2014, UCSF's direct contributions have resulted in more than $181M for BCH Oakland's care of pediatric Medi-Cal patients in Alameda County.
  • The affiliation brought in more than $200 million in philanthropy for building programs and supporting operations for Oakland.
  • Because of UCSF's support, BCH Oakland has been able to survive financially during the COVID pandemic.


Expanding children's health services and programs

Rumor  Fact
The affiliation has reduced children's services in Oakland. This rumor gets it wrong. In fact, the affiliation has:
  • Enabled Oakland's Pediatric Trauma Center to remain in Oakland, when more than 40 California hospitals have closed their emergency departments.
  • Expanded BCH Oakland's specialty programs – such as physical rehabilitation – and upgraded services that were unavailable or had declined.
  • Recruited new doctors in neurology, neurosurgery and gastroenterology.
  • Rebuilt Oakland's cardiology program, with a larger cardiac team and more heart surgery services.
  • Added new programs in dermatology, rheumatology, gender identity, headache, sports medicine, concussions and Down Syndrome.
  • Set up new Oakland physician practices in orthopedics, ear/nose/throat and pulmonology.
  • Expanded mental health care for children, enrolling 42 pediatric practices in its psychiatry telehealth program so far, covering more than 200,000 children.
  • Added 220 community physicians to its primary care pediatrician network, reaching 56 locations in 24 cities.
Oakland's patients are being sent to San Francisco, reducing the options for low-income patients in Oakland. This misleading statement provides a false and incomplete picture of how a single pediatric health system with two campuses operates.
  • Our physicians send patients to both locations to provide the specific care their patients need.
  • For example, the Oakland campus is our primary center of excellence for sickle cell care. Both Oakland and San Francisco have sickle cell programs; patients are sent from San Francisco when our physicians determine these patients will be served better in Oakland.
  • Oakland is also where we send patients who need services such as trauma care, inpatient pediatric rehabilitation, robotic exoskeleton-based rehabilitation from spinal cord injury, and infusion services for the genetic metabolic disease mucopolysaccharidosis.
  • Children receive care in either hospital, based on medical needs – not insurance coverage. UCSF has financial responsibility for both hospitals, so there is no financial incentive to move children from Oakland.


Investing in Oakland facilities and resources

 Rumor  Fact
The affiliation is taking resources out of Oakland and sending them to San Francisco. The millions of dollars in investment made in Oakland since the affiliation show that this claim is simply false.
  • We continue to invest in Oakland facilities to help ensure its status as a world-class safety net hospital and Level One Pediatric Trauma Center for years to come.
  • More than $200M in investments in Oakland facilities have already been made, and the goal is to complete another $120M in projects by the end of 2022, focused on seismic upgrades and modernizing our acute care services.
  • This includes $90 million in philanthropy to support the new BCH Oakland outpatient clinic – a state-of-the-art facility that expanded outpatient care by 40%.
  • We expect to start phase 2 soon of the Oakland expansion soon, launching an estimated $1 billion, 10-year initiative that will include a new patient pavilion.
  • The affiliation allowed BCH Oakland to access $50 million in bond funds to improve its intensive care units, inpatient areas and seismic safety.
  • The investment in Oakland's Electronic Health Record system has helped the hospital reduce costs, improve efficiency and provide better care for patients. 
The Sickle Cell program in Oakland has been diminished. In fact, Oakland's Sickle Cell Disease Center is expanding care and research into new therapies to treat this debilitating condition.


Strengthening health equity as a key priority

Rumor Fact
The affiliation has hurt vulnerable children in the Oakland community. Serving the most vulnerable is at the center of our mission. It guides everything we do.
  • Nearly 70% of BCH Oakland's patients receive care under Medi-Cal. No child is turned away due to a family's inability to pay.
  • We are strengthening programs that matter most to our Oakland community, such as Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) research. Since the affiliation, Oakland's expertise in ACEs has led to a screening tool that is now used in children's clinics statewide.