Dr. Clement Yeh Receives Heroes & Hearts Award

Dr. Clement Yeh, Associate Clinical Professor of Emergency Medicine and Medical Director for the San Francisco Fire Department, was honored by the San Francisco General Foundation at its annual Heroes & Hearts award luncheon on February 18, 2016, for his work overseeing EMS-6, a new program which pairs paramedic captains from the Fire Department with members of the Public Health Department's Homeless Outreach Team. Dr. Yeh began working at Zuckerberg San Francisco General  (ZSFG) in 2002 as a resident in the Emergency Department after attending Stanford University. He joined the faculty at UCSF, working full time at ZSFG. As the City's only Trauma Center, the hospital serves as the Emergency Medical Services Base Hospital, allowing Dr. Yeh to invest in his interest in pre-hospital care, working closely with San Francisco Fire Department Paramedics and Emergency Medical Technicians. After working on various projects to improve the 911 systems, Dr. Yeh became the Medical Director for the Department of Emergency Management 911 Communications Center and in 2012 began serving as the San Francisco Fire Department Medical Director As part of extending and improving the safety net of emergency care in the City, he has been involved in a joint project between the SFFD and the Department of Public Health that will help to improve the health of some of San Francisco's most vulnerable patients. This program, called EMS-6, was created to meet the needs of people in San Francisco who depend on the emergency care system for almost all of their health needs by working to help avoid medical emergencies. The program takes its name from emergency medical services and the six points on the Star of Life, the familiar emblem on ambulances.The idea is that when an ambulance responds to a 911 call for one of those frequent users of the city's emergency rooms, the EMS-6 team will be called to join in. Sometimes the person will be transported to an emergency room anyway, but sometimes the EMS-6 team will be able to address the problem on the spot and find social services or other help as well. "The overall goal is to improve the health of people we see as vulnerable," says Dr. Yeh. "If you're not sure where you're going to be sleeping and where your next meal is coming from, it's harder to think about managing your diabetes and making your doctor's appointments." In addition to running the EMS-6 program, as the medical director for the 911 system and the Fire Department, Dr. Yeh is in charge of ensuring San Francisco's citizens get the best possible care from emergency dispatchers and paramedics before they arrive at the hospital. He oversees 1,500 paramedics and ambulance technicians who respond to 100,000 incidents every year. He also works one shift a week as a doctor in the emergency room at ZSFG. Dr. Yeh was featured in The San Francisco Chronicle on the front page of the Bay Area section on Sunday, February 14, 2016.