The Health Navigator Foundation

Navigating Your Recovery

Your Partner in Post-Surgical Success

“This program has helped guide me through the after care process as well as giving me constant support and resources... and [gave] me a second shot at life.”
“It was wonderful to have someone help talk us through the process and what to expect. They were always there... making sure that not only was I doing well, but so was my caretaker.”
“The Navigator program provided a valuable advocate for the patient and... caregiver [and] lightened the load for hospital staff, too. Thank you for being there.”
“Health Navigator was instrumental to my recovery... when our needs were most pronounced. [They were] my guiding light before and after my heart transplant. I am forever grateful!”
“Health Navigator Foundation [was] an invaluable resource when I didn't know where to turn. The support for items such as transportation, planning, and food were extremely helpful.”
”Nina, our coordinator, was always available to answer questions and assist with any issues we had. I am grateful that this service was available for us!”
“I really did appreciate your support after and during my serious health episode. You deserve the best for what you do. Thank you for your guidance in an ocean of pain and distress.”

At the Health Navigator Foundation, we believe that everyone benefits from equitable access to resources that ensure the opportunity to achieve optimal health outcomes. By addressing social determinants of health, we empower recipients of navigation services on their path to recovery and well-being.

We were founded in 2018 with the aim of supporting patients facing complex life-saving surgeries for organ failure. We do this by assigning a health navigator and providing essential resources during the critical 4 weeks of recovery following hospitalization after surgery.

Darryl & Willa’s Story

Learn about their experience partnering with the Health Navigator Foundation during Darryl’s recent heart and kidney transplant.

Since 2018, Health Navigator Foundation...

What We Do

We are there to help navigate you through your recovery post-transplant or LVAD following your discharge from the hospital or rehabilitation facility.

  • Our team understands the nuances of clinic days and is available to navigate you and your caregiver during procedures, laboratories, and clinic appointments.
  • We know your clinic schedule can be complex and overwhelming, and our goal is to help you and your caregiver feel confident in navigating your medical follow-up.
  • You may have had to relocate temporarily following your transplant, and navigating the local community may be overwhelming and a source of stress. We are here to help guide you so you can focus on your recovery.
  • We also maintain constant communication with your medical care team to help bridge any gaps.

For individuals with qualifying income levels, we provide essential resources to allow those facing life-saving surgeries and their caregivers to focus on their recovery rather than worrying about ancillary costs of their illness. Patients with qualifying income levels are additionally offered basic resources including:

  • Food/meal support
  • Parking vouchers
  • Gas cards and/or Lyft rides
  • Short-term lodging
  • Caregivers

Dealing with organ failure can be daunting and filled with uncertainty. We have found that individuals and caregivers in this position benefit greatly from speaking to someone who has been through the process of organ transplant or advanced therapies and can describe their first-hand unique experience.

Our peer mentors are in the unique position to provide feedback and encouragement because of their experience.

The Peer Mentor Program consists of Transplant and LVAD recipients and their caregivers who have completed training to mentor patients and their caregivers going through the process. Peer Mentor roles include:

  • Sharing their personal experience with the process
  • Explaining their recovery and life after the transplant procedure
  • Offering reassurance, emotional and educational support and non-medical guidance

No Cost to You

Who We Are


Medical Director

Board certified Physician and Surgeon since 2006

BS: Georgetown University
M.D.: Loyola University School of Medicine
Residency: Mount Sinai School of Medicine
Fellowship: University of California, San Francisco


Clinical Research Consultant

Clinical Professor, University of California, San Francisco
American Board of Pediatrics Certified

BA: University of California, Berkeley
M.D.: University of California, San Diego
Residency: University of California, San Diego
Fellowship: University of California, San Diego
Advanced Fellowship Training: Stanford University


Program Director

BA: University of California, Berkeley
MSW: University of California, Berkeley

Ana Chow, LCSW

Interim Program Director

BA: University of California, Santa Cruz
MSW: Columbia University