Health Frontiers in Tijuana

About Health Frontiers in Tijuana

On April 30, 2011, the Health Frontiers in Tijuana (HFiT) student-run free clinic was established in Tijuana’s Zona Norte. HFiT serves vulnerable populations, including substance users, sex workers, the homeless, deportees, and indigent patients. HFiT patients often reside within the Zona Norte, although persons from more than 60 miles away have also received care at HFiT. HFiT was founded as a partnership between the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine (UCSD) and Tijuana’s Autonomous University of Baja California School of Medicine (UABC), the only publicly funded medical school in Tijuana. 

The great need for healthcare for marginalized populations, combined with the desire of both universities to impact local communities, led to the planning and founding of the HFiT clinic. Start-up funding came from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and Baja California’s Secretariat of Health (La Secretaría de Salud de Baja California: ISESALUD). Currently, HFiT also receives in-kind support (e.g. medications, supplies) from the State of Baja California’s HIV/AIDS program and Desayunador Salesino "Padre Chava", which provides the site for the clinic.

As we gather more resources and people, the scope of HFiT's mission continues to expand. At HFiT, we are committed to providing the highest level of care for the underserved and disadvantaged, as well as training the next generation of health professionals and researchers.


We seek to sustain health through:

  • Free medical and preventative care for Tijuana's underserved
  • Community health education
  • Access to social services
  • Evidence based health care in resource constrained settings
  • Binationa partnerships and cultural competency
  • Community health research projects driven by U.S. and Mexican students and faculty

Our Core Values are:

  • Respect
  • Trust
  • Learning
  • Excellence
  • Diversity
  • Communication
  • Empowerment
  • Integration
  • Community
  • Cross-border evidence based medicine

Our Mission: 

To promote binational dialogue and collaboration in community health and community based research to the next generation of Mexican and American health care professionals.

To impart students with skills in community based research, cultural competency and familiarity with Mexico's culture, technical proficiency in the provision of care to Spanish-speaking patients, and knowledge of health and social issues specific to the U.S.-Mexico border region.

To offer health care providers mentoring opportunities and a setting to refine clinical skills relevant to providing care for the underserved and vulnerable individuals in low resource settings.


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