2023 Impact Report


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Dear CAPTC Community,

The CAPTC continues its crucial work on the front lines of public health to reduce the rise in STIs, HIV, and emerging diseases; to make health care more equitable and inclusive; and to address structural barriers like racism, LGBTQ+ phobia, and more. In 2023, the CAPTC conducted numerous trainings to build the capacity of health care providers, disease intervention professionals, navigators, and other health professionals. As a Center, we brought our many assets to the table and worked with our partners to provide invaluable resources for our learners. Our combination of providing capacity building and cultivating deep relationships on the ground allows us to create training based on emerging needs, and applicable to the unique and diverse contexts of programs, regions, and jurisdictions.


Some highlights from 2023:

  • Diversified our consulting and contract work, including a large contract with the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) to create an asynchronous Introduction to Public Health course. The multimedia course will launch in 2024.
  • Expanded our capacity building for clinics. For example, our PrEP access team worked with clinics on data-based adjustments in PrEP provision.
  • Increased our internal capacity. Since I started at the CAPTC, every team member has had the opportunity to attend at least one national learning experience per year.
  • Conducted a two-day strategic planning retreat in Long Beach, CA. We explored our history since our founding in 1989 and renewed our sense of common commitment to our why: ensuring health care access for all, especially those historically marginalized.
  • Promoted inclusivity in our programs, so that participants can see themselves reflected across our staff, programming, and approach. One way we did this was by showcasing 21 disease intervention professionals from across the United States during October in honor of National DIS Recognition Day.
  • After 37 years of public service, Denise Tafoya retired from the CAPTC. Denise is nationally known for her work to advance disease intervention education, skills, and certification. We wish her many adventures in retirement.

This past year has been busy for me as I completed my second year in my role as director. This coming year, we look forward to leading and meeting the needs of a variety of partners in public health and sexual health. We welcome you to join us.

With excitement and hope for the work ahead,

Dana Cropper, MPA, MHR

DIS Summit – DIS the Cornerstone of Public Health: Then, Now, and Into the Future 

CAPTC hosted the 2nd annual DIS Summit focused on the foundational role that disease intervention specialists have played and continue to play in public health. Held virtually over three days in June, the summit was attended by over 450 participants. Nationally renowned speakers presented on priority topics identified by and relevant to California-based disease intervention workforce professionals. Topics included updates on STIs, HIV, and mpox; dismantling stigma and reducing health inequities; biomedical approaches, and much more. See recordings from the summit here.

Inclusive and Trauma-Informed Care in Family Planning Care and Services

The Family Planning, Access, Care, and Treatment (Family PACT) Program produced a series of webinars that tied thematically around ways providers can integrate critical practices into their provision of family planning services. Practices included trauma-informed care, inclusiveness, person-centered counseling and decision-making. The webinars also addressed specific demographics that are often overlooked like minors, clients with disabilities, and those who identify as trans/non-binary. To better reach our learners and increase engagement, we expanded our roster of presenters to include those who are both experts in the field and represent the demographics of the populations most impacted. In total, we hosted four webinars reaching over 2,300 participants. Minor Consent and Confidentiality for Sexual Health Services in California was our most well-attended webinar to date with 1,034 attendees. 

“This is one of the best webinars I have attended. We are working with our…clinics…to expand their ability to provide reproductive health care and family planning services to persons with disabilities. This is the best ‘foundational tool’ I have seen. I am looking forward to sharing the information with our 8 clinics throughout the state.”

– Webinar participant, Inclusive Services: Approaches to Improve Sexual and Reproductive Health Care for People with Disabilities

“I have many more tools at my disposal now to help me in providing appropriate care to my patients.”

– Webinar participant, Minor Consent and Confidentiality for Sexual Health Services in California

New Leadership Training Launched: Supervising DIS and Front-Line Staff

Through our partnership with CDPH, we launched the Supervising DIS and Front-Line Staff training course in October 2023. It has since been added to the CAPTC roster of available trainings and requested multiple times across California. Originally specific to disease intervention services supervision with case review, this training is adaptable and applicable to multiple arenas examining and developing concepts of leadership, communication, and coaching.

Reaching a Broader Audience Through Translation

In 2023, CAPTC Disease Intervention Training Center (DITC) secured CDC funding to translate the DITC Interviewing Series courses. All four courses in the series are being translated into Spanish and will be available to learners in late 2024.

Addressing DEI and Racial Equity at CDPH

The CAPTC focused on supporting structural and sustainable change to address DEI and racial equity. The CAPTC Capacity Building Assistance (CBA) program provided tailored technical assistance to the California Department of Public Health’s Office of AIDS (CDPH/OA) on implementing diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) strategies within their statewide HIV community planning group and addressing racial inequities in their health department structure. Attendees reported impacts at both personal and professional levels and related discussions continue around self-care and ways to incorporate DEI into the organization’s staff recruitment and work.

Two CDPH employees in full PPE work with samples in the Richmond lab.

Introduction to Public Health Course

Public health in California has an incredibly broad scope, with over 250 CDPH programs in wide-ranging fields, from testing shellfish for safety to producing and distributing the world’s only antidote for infant botulism. Introducing CDPH employees to the fundamentals of public health and illustrating how their work fits into the big picture of public health in California has been a goal for CDPH for many years. In 2023, the CAPTC partnered with CDPH to initiate development of an online course series that introduces fundamental public health concepts and showcases real life examples of public health principles in action. Learning modules will support CDPH employees to develop basic skills in areas foundational to a public health career and to appreciate how CDPH impacts the daily lives of Californians. The course series is expected to launch in mid-2024.

Clinical STI Fellowship

In collaboration with CDPH, the CAPTC remains one of the few prevention training centers (PTCs) to support an STI fellowship. Many of the CAPTC fellows go on to support sexual health in varying capacities and roles. The CAPTC congratulates former CAPTC/CDPH STI fellow, Akanksha Vaidya, MD, MPH, who completed her fellowship in late 2022 and is now the STI/HIV Controller for Santa Clara County! 

At a time when training opportunities around sexual and reproductive health are being compromised by changes in legislation, CAPTC is continuing to partner with San Francisco City Clinic to support clinical, hands-on preceptorships for providers and trainees.

Communications Internship

The CAPTC trained five new communications interns in 2023. The communications internship provides mentorship and professional development around sexual health, public health, and communications to the next generation of public health communicators. Since it was established in 2022, the internship program has graduated ten college student interns.

“This internship gave me amazing hands-on experience and taught me a lot about the world of public health communications. … I’m very thankful for this experience, which has encouraged me to further pursue a career in public health communications post-grad!”    – Lauren Chang, former intern

Wrapping Up Our Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic

The Virtual Training Academy+ (VTA+) ended in December 2023, after three years of strong collaboration between UC San Francisco, CDPH, and UCLA. The VTA+ project began in early 2020 as a joint response to the COVID-19 pandemic to address the need for trained public health workers to curb the pandemic’s impact on California communities. Training topics included essential interview skills for disease investigation, outbreak management, guidance for school specialists, vaccination communications, cultural humility, mpox and tuberculosis disease intervention, long COVID, and epidemiology. The VTA+ trained over 16,000 learners in the State of California, contributing significantly to the State’s COVID-19 pandemic response and strengthening its public health workforce.

CBA Intermountain Harm Reduction Conference

The CAPTC CBA team provided logistical and evaluative support to the Intermountain West Harm Reduction Conference (IWHRC) held September 28 – 29, 2023 in Salt Lake City, UT. The hybrid event focused on building and strengthening a network of harm reductionists in the Intermountain West region to improve communication, visibility, and innovation around harm reduction. Over 200 community health workers, prevention specialists, and medical professionals attended IWHRC, sharing in the opportunity to exchange knowledge and experience regarding holistic harm reduction strategies.

CBA West Region Learning Collaborative 

The CAPTC CBA program continued its partnership with the Denver Prevention Training Center and the San Francisco Department of Public Health to sustain the West Region Learning Collaborative (WRLC) by hosting monthly sessions. The WRLC encourages health departments and community-based organizations to collaborate and to share effective strategies that enhance HIV prevention and care services delivery. In 2023, the WRLC hosted 14 sessions with over 400 participants. The WRLC topics were centered around the CDC Ending the HIV Epidemic in the U.S. (EHE) pillars: Diagnose, Treat, Respond, Prevent. CAPTC CBA hosted sessions that focused on racial/health equity and HIV data to care, including data to care through the utilization of pharmacy databases.

person holding blue pills

PrEP Learning Collaboratives  

The PrEP Learning Collaborative continues to be at the forefront in providing timely and vital information and support for expanding access to PrEP. During 2023, we conducted regular seminars on topics that included overcoming barriers and challenges to providing injectable long-acting PrEP and providing solutions for eliminating PrEP disparities, particularly those faced by Black/African American people, trans and gender diverse individuals, and youth.

New Mexico’s “Anything but COVID Lunch and Learn”  

Through a collaboration with New Mexico’s Department of Health, the “Anything but COVID Lunch and Learn” series learning community was created to support providers regarding day-to-day sexual health care in New Mexico. The CAPTC supports the sexual health components of this active learning collaborative by covering topics such as congenital syphilis, syphilis in pregnancy, mycoplasma genitalium, and DoxyPEP.

various microscopic images of pathogens

DITC Training of Trainers

The CAPTC DITC provided a Training of Trainer (ToT) series for its Interviewing Series courses to ensure National DITC training continues to provide consistent, high-quality courses. All the staff who attended the ToTs were cleared by CDC to train all four courses in the Interviewing Series.

Coming Together for Sexual Health Podcast Season 4 

The CAPTC completed its fourth podcast season in 2023, creating nine new episodes that reached 1,500 listens. Spanning its four seasons the podcast has had over 5,000 listens. Topics and speakers are chosen with input from our community advisory board. Season 4 guests included experts in their fields such as Dan Savage, drag queen and harm reductionist Kochina Rude, and 2023 MacArthur “Genius Award” recipient, Dr. Diana Greene Foster. Topics covered areas of harm reduction, family planning and reproductive justice, and pleasure.

In 2024, the CAPTC will continue to create robust programming to meet the diverse needs of our learning communities. We are intent on fostering a culture of learning and service that encourages participants to explore new ideas and make meaningful contributions within their communities.

Join us!