Palo Alto Medical Foundation Newsroom

Palo Alto Medical Foundation Sponsors Rey of Hope Luncheon


Elizabeth (“Lizz”) Vilardo, M.D.

SAN JOSE, Calif.– March 15, 2017 — Cristo Rey San Jose Jesuit High School is pleased to announce that Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF) is a “Summa Cum Laude” sponsor of its primary fundraiser of the year, taking place on March 24, 2017, at the downtown San Jose Marriott Hotel. As the lead sponsor, PAMF has pledged to help underwrite costs and provide much needed scholarship funds for Cristo Rey students.

“We are very blessed and grateful for our partnership with PAMF,” says Father Peter Pabst, SJ, president of Cristo Rey San Jose. “In addition to its generous support of our event, PAMF is the largest provider of jobs in our Work Study program, offering excellent work opportunities and mentorship for 12 Cristo Rey students.”

The Rey of Hope Luncheon will highlight accomplishments of Cristo Rey students as well as raise funds for the Rey of Hope Scholarship Fund. Elizabeth Vilardo, M.D., CEO of Palo Alto Medical Foundation, is the keynote speaker of the event, which is expected to draw in excess of 500 attendees.

We are so pleased to have the opportunity to work with these motivated students,” said Dr. Vilardo. “We value the contribution they are making to the important work we do every day to provide the best care for patients. This is an important time for them and we hope their experiences at PAMF and Cristo Rey will help them to continue to succeed in pursuing an education, a career and giving back to others.”

Sade F., a sophomore at Cristo Rey San Jose, says, “Working at Palo Alto Medical Foundation has transformed my work day into my favorite day of the week. My work experience at PAMF has also influenced my interest in pursuing medicine as my career. I constantly learn from those around me and they inspire me to succeed. I am extremely grateful for the amazing opportunities presented to me through PAMF.”

Working at both the Sunnyvale and Mountain View PAMF campuses, Sade and fellow Cristo Rey students are learning skills such as working directly with patients to help them register for the Flu Shot Express, confirming telephone appointments, working as Patient Service Representatives at the front desk of the clinical departments and facilitating the transfer of patients’ messages from the automated system to the appropriate department.

For more information and to purchase tickets to the Rey of Hope Luncheon, please contact Shelby Saso at

About Cristo Rey San Jose

Cristo Rey San Jose Jesuit High School provides students from underserved communities with a rigorous, college-prep education and a unique Work Study program, in which students work one day per week at Silicon Valley businesses. Fees paid by companies such as Cisco, HP, Yahoo!, Palo Alto Medical Foundation, Frank Rimerman + Co., and dozens of others help offset up to 50 percent of tuition costs. Cristo Rey San Jose is one of 32 schools nationally that comprise the Cristo Rey Network, which boast a 90% college enrollment rate. More information is available at

About the Palo Alto Medical Foundation

The Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF) for Health Care, Research and Education, is part of the Sutter Health network of care. Founded in 1930, PAMF is a not-for-profit health care organization that is a pioneer in the multispecialty group practice of medicine, health innovation and patient-centered care. PAMF’s more than 1,400 affiliated physicians and 6,100 employees serve one million patients at its medical centers and clinics in Alameda, Contra Costa, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties. For more information about the Palo Alto Medical Foundation, please visit the PAMF website.



Creating Economic Opportunities at PAMF

Edwin Gonzalez, Rebecca Ostrander and Harly Neumann accepting award from JobTrain.

PAMF received JobTrain’s Inaugural Bay Area Economic Opportunity Award for having hiring practices and programs that open up employment opportunities for people who are talented and skilled but have experienced barriers to employment.

A big thanks to Blair Arreguin, a recruiter at PAMF, who worked with JobTrain to place medical assistants at PAMF.

JobTrain is a non-profit organization with a mission to improve the lives of people through job skills training and placement.

A team including Harly Neumann, PhD, VP Human Resources; Edwin Gonzalez, recruitment team lead; and Rebecca Ostrander, recruitment lead; accepted the award during a ceremony at the Hiller Aviation Museum in San Carlos.

Out of many submissions from Bay Area companies, 18 finalists were selected to attend the event and six winners were chosen for the award. Some of the other finalists included Google, LinkedIn, Webcor and Intel.


Sutter Health Research Projects on Patient-Centered Care Receive National Awards

 Palo Alto, Calif., (Feb. 13, 2017) – The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) based in Washington, D.C., recently awarded funding to a study at Palo Alto Medical Foundation Research Institute (PAMFRI) on improving communication between patients and primary care doctors, and to a PAMF project aimed at improving preventive care for seniors.

A study led by Ming Tai-Seale, Ph.D., MPH, associate director of PAMFRI, received $5.8 million to assess the effectiveness of three different approaches to enhancing patient-doctor communication in a primary care setting.

“We want to enable patients to have a voice in their care from the beginning,” said Dr. Tai-Seale. “This project encourages patients to be better prepared and to engage in shared decision making so that they will get more out of their visit. And it will help doctors and patients choose the best treatment plan for the patient.’’

Dr. Ming Tai-Seale at a conference held by Health Affairs, a leading policy journal.

Dr. Ming Tai-Seale at a conference held by Health Affairs, a leading policy journal.

An award for $50,000 went to the Guzik Family Center for Geriatrics and Palliative Care at PAMF to advance the Fostering Successful Aging project. Established in 2014, Fostering Successful Aging has received funding from PCORI for three consecutive years. The project’s goal is to engage older people, the medical community, researchers and other stakeholders in studying effective strategies to help seniors maintain their health and independence for as long as possible.

“This work focuses attention on value-based preventive care for seniors by discovering how patients can help contribute meaningfully to improving care for seniors both now and in the future,” said Peter H. Cheng, M.D., founder of the project and leader of geriatric medicine at PAMF’s Guzik Center.

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Palo Alto Medical Foundation Opens New Sunnyvale Eye Institute


PAMF’s Munnerlyn Eye Institute at 1085 El Camino Real in Sunnyvale

Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF) announced the opening on  Monday, Dec. 12, 2016, of  Munnerlyn Eye Institute, a new spacious facility in Sunnyvale offering eye care for all ages as well as advanced procedures. The Institute is located at 1085 West El Camino Real.

As part of PAMF’s ophthalmology and optometry department, the doctors at Munnerlyn Eye Institute offer a full range of eye care. This includes eye exams and prescribing corrective lenses as well as treatment of eye diseases such as conjunctivitis, macular degeneration, other retina disorders, glaucoma and cataracts. Renowned specialists perform advanced surgeries and LASIK procedures. The Institute’s providers also offer specialized pediatric eye care. Read More

PAMF Earns Top Quality, Service Rating

The quality of care and service that the Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF) provides to its patients is among the best in California, according to a statewide assessment of all medical groups. The California Office of the Patient Advocate (OPA) awarded PAMF with four stars – the highest possible rating in quality and service – in four counties PAMF serves: Alameda, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Santa Cruz.

In the OPA ratings system, a four-star rating is defined as scoring greater than the 90th percentile on performance measures including quality and patient satisfaction ratings.

“Providing the highest quality care is the core commitment to our patients,” says PAMF Medical Director of Quality Ed Yu, M.D. “Our doctors, clinicians and staff work tirelessly to bring the best care to our patients. The four-star rating from the Office of the Patient Advocate is one of many validations of our successes.”

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Bay Area Parent Names PAMF Pediatricians ‘Best in Bay Area’

BAP-2016BestSeveral Sutter Health affiliates recently received top ratings in Bay Area Parent Magazine’s 2016 “Best of the Best” survey. Bay Area Parent readers selected Gold, Silver and Bronze winners in 45 different categories, including several health care categories, for the Silicon Valley, the Peninsula and the San Francisco/Marin area. The categories are chosen by the Bay Area Parent editorial team to reflect resources that are most important to local parents. Read More

PAMF to Participate in National Initiative to Prevent Heart Attacks and Strokes

cmsThe Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF) has been selected by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) as one of 516 awardees to help reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes among millions of Medicare fee-for-service patients. PAMF and other health care organizations participating in the Million Hearts® Cardiovascular Disease Risk Reduction Model will work to decrease cardiovascular disease risk by assessing an individual patient’s risk for heart attack or stroke and applying prevention interventions.

“It’s an honor to be selected to participate in this important national initiative to help prevent heart disease,” says Ed Yu, M.D., medical director of Quality who will be leading this initiative at PAMF. “It ties in perfectly with our already very strong focus on preventive care for our patients. It’s also a welcome and exciting move away from a payment structure based on volume rather than outcomes.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), heart disease is the leading cause of death and a major contributor to disability in the United States. One in three deaths is caused by heart attacks and strokes, resulting in over $300 billion of health care costs each year.

Currently, health care organizations and physicians are paid to screen for blood pressure, cholesterol, or other risk factors individually. In testing a new approach, organizations participating in the Million Hearts® Cardiovascular Disease Risk Reduction Model’s intervention group will use a data-driven, widely accepted predictive modeling approach to generate personalized risk scores and develop specific plans in partnership with patients to reduce the risk of having a heart attack or stroke. Accepted applicants were randomly assigned to either the intervention or control group in accordance with the model’s randomized control design.

Overall, nearly 20,000 health care providers and over 3.3 million Medicare fee-for-service patients will participate in the five-year model. PAMF is participating in the intervention group and will work with Medicare fee-for-service patients to determine their ten-year individual risk for a heart attack or stroke.

PAMF will then work with patients individually to identify the best approach or approaches to reducing their risk of having a heart attack or stroke – for example, smoking cessation interventions, blood pressure management, or cholesterol-lowering drugs or aspirin – and will explain the benefits of each approach. Each patient will receive a personalized risk modification plan that will target their specific risk factors. PAMF will be paid for reducing the absolute risk for heart disease or stroke among their high-risk patients.

“Our health care system historically often emphasized acute care over preventive care,” said Patrick Conway, M.D., CMS acting principal deputy administrator and chief medical officer. “This initiative will enhance patient-centered care and give practitioners the resources to invest the time and staff to address and manage patients who are at high risk for heart attacks and strokes.”

Learn more about the Million Hearts® initiative.

For additional information about the Million Hearts® Cardiovascular Risk Reduction Model, including a fact sheet and a list of participants, please visit the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services website.