The AIDS epidemic was one of the most significant health-related events of the 20th century, and continues into the 21st. The financial and social costs are staggering, and health care delivery has undergone phenomenal changes to cope with the epidemic.
San Francisco was particularly hard hit by AIDS, and community-based organizations (CBOs) began to develop here early on to care for the sick and the dying. Within the first few years of onset of the crisis, a highly effective, collaborative network of city and state agencies, hospitals, health care providers, and CBOs developed. A large array of services evolved to help people affected by HIV.