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St. Anthony Foundation Appoints Lawrence Kwan, MD as New Chief Medical Officer


Media Contact:
Sally Haims | Chief Marketing and Communications Officer
(415) 254-5884 | SHaims@stanthonysf.org

Dr. Kwan, an expert in internal medicine, will oversee the foundation’s Medical Clinic

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (May 3, 2023) – St. Anthony Foundation, committed to providing pathways to stability for thousands of San Franciscans in need annually, announces the appointment of Lawrence (Larry) Kwan as the foundation’s new Chief Medical Officer (CMO).

As CMO, Dr. Kwan will lead St. Anthony’s Medical Clinic, including overseeing clinic staff, leading the clinic’s quality of care to guests, and strategizing long-term planning for the organization’s medical services.

“Dr. Kwan brings a wealth of industry experience to St. Anthony’s, and his extensive background, particularly serving people experiencing homelessness who are in need of medical care, is a tremendous asset to the foundation and our guests,” said Nils Behnke, CEO of St. Anthony’s.

Dr. Kwan joins St. Anthony’s from Stanford University’s School of Medicine, where he spent the previous eight years serving in various capacities, most recently as Section Chief and Clinical Assistant Professor, Medicine – Primary Care and Population Health. During his tenure, Dr. Kwan developed Stanford Health Care’s strategy for and execution of employer-based primary care. He managed three on-site corporate health centers within companies, including Qualcomm, Cisco, and Yahoo.

“I am excited to be part of an organization with such a long history of caring for the vulnerable (population) in San Francisco,” said Dr. Kwan, who will officially start his new role on May 1. “I also love the fact that the additional wraparound services provided at St Anthony’s are different than the ones provided in the hospital systems I have worked for in the past – food, clothing, employment, etc., …these are critical services that allow me as a clinician to care for the whole person.”

Originally, Dr. Kwan worked in the technology industry, spending over four years at Apple as a Product Marketing Manager. Following his calling to pursue medicine and graduating medical school, he spent eight years working for Santa Clara Valley Medical Center where he was the Medical Director of the Valley Homeless Healthcare Program (VHHP) and Ambulatory Care Medical Director.

While as director of VHHP, Dr. Kwan managed several, grassroots initiatives promoting medical care to vulnerable populations and underserved communities. He led the Puentes Clinic, a methadone clinic to treat active injection drug users, started mobile clinics, partnered with needle-exchange programs, and developed a program for recently discharged hospitalized patients experiencing homelessness, ensuring their continued health.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity to contribute to an organization like St. Anthony’s with such a remarkable history and legacy of doing so much good for San Franciscans in need,” said Dr. Kwan. “And, I’m looking forward to learning more about how St. Anthony’s does its work.”

“The Medical Clinic does absolutely incredible work for our patients,” said Tim Dunn, board member of St. Anthony’s. “With Dr. Kwan’s leadership, he’ll build on existing services to ensure the same high standard for quality primary and specialty medical care.”

Dr. Kwan graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering/Operations Research. Following his transition from the technology industry to the medical field, he received his Doctorate of Medicine from the University of California, Davis.

“St. Anthony’s serves people in need suffering from homelessness, poverty or addiction, and Dr. Kwan’s experience at VHHP will be an important asset to the clinic and will take our health care services to new heights,” said Behnke. “There’s a lot of potential for further innovation with him leading the clinic, potential opportunities to collaborate with organizations aligned with our mission of helping to create a society in which all people can flourish.”

Residing in San Mateo County in the mid-Peninsula, Dr. Kwan enjoys spending his free time with his family – wife and daughter – and is an avid runner and traveler.

About St. Anthony Foundation Medical Clinic

St. Anthony’s Medical Clinic provides primary and specialty care to the Tenderloin community, serving nearly 2,500 individuals and families annually. We are a safety-net clinic, with 70 percent of our patients living below the Federal Poverty Level. We focus on patient-centered primary care, with an emphasis on access and dignity. We also provide specialty services, including pediatrics, podiatric medicine, and behavioral health, among others.

About St. Anthony Foundation

In the Tenderloin’s struggle with poverty, addiction, and mental illness, St. Anthony Foundation has been a beacon of consistency, companionship, and caring for more than 70 years. We provide our guests with a range of services—from a place to rest or take a shower, clothing, and addiction recovery, to meals, medical care, and workforce development. At St. Anthony’s, we take a different approach, one that delivers meaningful results — Hope. Stability. Renewal.

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