Global to Local: Impacting the SeaTac and Tukwila Communities

Global to Local: Impacting the SeaTac and Tukwila Communities

By Sherry Williams
Community Affairs Director

Continuing Swedish’s long-standing commitment to improve the health and well-being of our region, Swedish has partnered with Washington Global Health Alliance, Public Health of Seattle & King County, and HealthPoint to address disparities in local healthcare through a groundbreaking initiative: Global to Local.

The Global to Local initiative is a new approach in applying global solutions to local healthcare challenges in underserved populations. The partnership reached out to SeaTac and Tukwila, which are just 15 miles south of Seattle and are both strong, vibrant communities with a long history of activism and community pride. However, with the settlement of new immigrants and refugees there have been many challenged for access to healthcare. Currently there are over 70 languages spoken in SeaTac and Tukwila schools and households. Many families have never seen a primary care doctor or do not know how to navigate through the healthcare system. These challenges have increased the need for additional services to address the basic needs of the community.

What will Global to Local do?

Global to Local will improve translation and interpretation services using technology, reducing this barrier to healthcare access. University of Washington graduate students and T- Mobile will play an important role in applying technology to everyday life by adapting smart phones to be used as translation devices to connect residents to interpreters. Global to Local will also employ trusted community advocates to promote access to health information and education.

Also, SeaTac YMCA has two great programs underway called Y Diabetes Prevention and ACT! to improve the health of residents accessing pre-diabetes and diabetes care. These programs assist residents via role play, educational materials, and demonstrations to modify behaviors around health. They will also use texting for reminders and help motivating program members.

What’s next?

More innovative concepts and programs will be rolled out with the next several months. If you want to learn more about Global to Local or community-based agencies in SeaTac and Tukwila, contact Adam Taylor at 206-293-2485 or email adam.taylor@kingcounty.gov

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