Sea Mar receives $50,000 donation to advance health care equity

Community Health Plan of Washington, the state’s local not-for-profit Medicaid (Apple Health) and Medicare managed health plan, has announced a $50,000 donation to Sea Mar community health centers to fund projects designed to remove barriers and increase access to health care services.

Sea Mar, which serves numerous Western Washington counties, including Grays Harbor, was one of 15 qualified community health centers in the state to receive such a grant — in total, $750,000 was donated to support projects that fall within four categories of equitable care: member experience and access, pregnancy care, depression management, and other chronic condition management. The Sea Mar donation falls into the latter category.

“I’m inspired by the work being done through this program to develop targeted interventions that address the unique needs of each health center’s local community,” said Leanne Berge, CEO of Community Health Plan of Washington and Community Health Network of Washington.

“We went through a rigorous process of creating a grant program that empowers each health center to assess its own community’s barriers to equitable health outcomes and to identify opportunities for impactful interventions, using techniques that can be deployed long after this pilot program ends.”

The initiative is part of the work the Community Health Plan of Washington is doing in a national cohort called the Advancing Health Equity: Leading Care, Payment, and Systems Transformation program. In partnership with the Washington Health Care Authority and the plan’s parent Community Health Network of Washington, Community Health Plan of Washington is part of one of the seven state teams leading this initiative, a learning collaborative which aims to build a culture of equity by looking at changes in care delivery as one of its focus areas.