October 26, 2015
Area(s) of Interest: Physician Leadership Professional Development & Education
David Folsom, M.D., was selected as the 2015 recipient of the California Medical Association (CMA) Foundation's 2015 Robert D. Sparks, M.D., Leadership Achievement Award. This award was established in 1997 in honor of Robert Sparks, M.D., the first CMA Foundation President and CEO. The award honors an individual who has demonstrated outstanding concern for the health of communities, consistent with the CMA Foundation’s mission to champion improved individual and community health through a partnership of leaders in medicine, related health professions and the community. Dr. Folsom embodies this mission through his dedication to improving the physical and mental health of homeless populations.
Dr. Folsom accepted the award during the President's Reception and Awards Gala, held at CMA's annual House of Delegates meeting in Anaheim.
Dr. Folsom is an Associate Professor of Clinical Psychiatry and Family Medicine at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) and is board certified in both specialties. He is also co-director of the UCSD Combined Family Medicine Psychiatry Residency Training Program. His leadership as the vice-chair of Mental Health America San Diego’s Board of Directors and as a member of the San Diego County Whole Person Workgroup has been essential in improving mental health services throughout the San Diego area.
Dr. Folsom’s research focuses on improving care for people who are homeless and mentally ill, and on improving medical care for people with schizophrenia. He has published more than 30 articles in peer-reviewed journals and has also served on the editorial board of the American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry.
Since 2008, Dr. Folsom has served as the Medical Director of the St. Vincent de Paul Village Family Health Center in downtown San Diego, where he provides both medical and psychiatric care for people who are homeless. Starting in 2011, he collaborated with Father Joe’s Villages on Project 25, a program for people who are homeless and extremely high utilizers of emergency health care. This program has been recognized as a national model for improving the care and reducing health care costs for people who are chronically homeless and high utilizers of health care.