The Washington Health Care Authority today announced two awards of $150,000 each to further support and test the design of regional coalitions called Accountable Communities of Health (ACHs).
The two selected pilot ACHs are:
- North Sound Accountable Community of Health, supported by Whatcom Alliance for Health Advancement. Serves the North Sound Regional Service Area: Whatcom, Skagit, Island, San Juan and Snohomish counties.
- Cascade Pacific Action Alliance, supported by CHOICE Regional Health Network. Serves the Timberlands and Thurston-Mason Regional Service Areas: Cowlitz, Grays Harbor, Lewis, Mason, Pacific, Thurston and Wahkiakum counties.
“No single organization or sector in a community can independently create lasting, transformative change in health and health care,” HCA Director Dorothy Teeter said. “We need clinical, community and government entities at the table together with clearly defined goals that support their community’s whole-person health—including physical health, behavioral health, and the many social determinants of health such as housing and education.”
House Bill 2572, passed during the 2014 legislative session and signed into law by Gov. Jay Inslee, creates a more effective health care purchasing system in Washington. The legislation authorized funding for two pilot ACHs through June 30, 2015. The two pilot communities will further develop and test the ACH governance structure and decision-making process, engagement strategy, and administrative support functions.
This is the next step in the multi-phased ACH initiative, with the ultimate goal of community empowerment and accountability for regional health improvement:
- 2014-2015: Community Engagement through Community of Health (COH) Planning Grants
- 2015-2016: Community Empowerment through regional Pilot and Design Grants
- By 2016-2018: Community Empowerment and Accountability through designated ACHs, evaluation and continued development
The two pilot ACHs are two of 10 entities previously funded by the COH planning grants of up to $50,000 each. The planning grants—which started on July 1, 2014 and ended December 31, 2014—helped communities begin or expand regional efforts to improve community engagement and multi-sector collaboration for health improvement.
In addition to the two Pilot ACHs, HCA intends to provide ACH design funding to coalitions within the remaining seven Regional Service Areas as part of the next phase of development.