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An innovative solution for the un (and under) insured

Health-care reform is a big, confusing, emotionally-charged topic. Now that 2014 is underway and the Affordable Care Act is beginning to take effect, many more Americans will have greater access to health insurance than they had before. It is estimated that 180,000 people in King County alone will become newly insured this year.

Still, there will be many people in our community – and throughout the country – who will continue to face barriers to accessing care. Some of them will be considered underinsured because they can’t afford to fill the gap in medical expenses not covered by their insurance. Others receiving Medicaid may find it difficult to locate a physician who is willing to take them on as a patient, as doctors are not required to see Medicaid patients, and many don’t. And then, there will probably always be those people who don’t have any insurance at all because, for one reason or another, they can’t sign up: the homeless, the chronically mentally ill, those who can’t read or write English, to name just a few.

Community clinics scattered throughout the nation, including several in our community, help address this problem on the primary care end. But access to specialty medical care for low-income patients facing barriers to care like the ones described above is likely to remain extremely difficult.

Fortunately, an innovative program pioneered at Swedish is addressing this effectively, and is likely to become a national model.

The Swedish Community Specialty Clinic (SCSC) was expanded and moved to the Swedish/First Hill campus in  ..

Swedish Honored at Leaders in Health Care 2014 Event

Seattle Business magazine recognizes Swedish for Outstanding Community Outreach

News Release
 
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                        
 
Contacts: Clay Holtzman, Swedish, 206-386-2748, clay.holtzman@swedish.org
 
Swedish Honored at Leaders in Health Care 2014 Event
Seattle Business magazine recognizes Swedish for Outstanding Community Outreach
 
SEATTLE — Feb. 25, 2014 — Swedish Health Services’ Community Benefits Program received the Outstanding Community Outreach award at Seattle Business magazine’s fifth annual Leaders in Health Care awards celebration. The largest and most comprehensive non-profit health provider in the Pacific Northwest, Swedish is known for creating high-impact community outreach programs such as the Swedish Community Specialty Clinic and Global to Local (G2L).
 
The Leaders in Health Care awards honor 25 outstanding organizations in eight categories, ranging from medical research to lifetime achievement. The Outstanding Community Outreach award recognizes organizations that are committed to developing and implementing original programs that improve the health of local communities.  
 
“It is an honor to be recognized with such a prestigious award,” said Tom Gibbon, manager of the Swedish Community Specialty Clinic and Ballard High School Teen Clinic. “It showcases years of work that not only benefits the most vulnerable populations in our community, but also offers sustainable and replicable solutions that will change how care is delivered.”
 
The Swedish Community Benefits Program evaluates public health data and collaborates with local organizations to produce initiatives that address a wide range of community health needs in the Pacific Northwest. Since 2006, Swedish has launched more than 15 initiatives. Programs such as the Swedish Community Specialty Clinic and Global to Local exist to combat long-term challenges while addressing immediate health care needs.  
 

Swedish MS Center design recognized

Less than two years old, the Swedish Multiple Sclerosis Center has already received an overwhelming amount of praise from patients and physicians alike for its holistic approach to world class care.

Now we can add one more accolade to the list.

Healthcare Design magazine recently recognized the MS Center’s patient and family waiting area as a finalist in the Family Spaces category of its Healthcare Design Remodel Renovation Competition.The entire piece beautifully encapsulates the approach, design and ultimately the quality of care that the MS Center strives to deliver. Here is an excerpt of one of the judge’s comments:

“The entire design is a phenomenal reflection of a deep understanding of the unique needs of patients with multiple sclerosis. It is apparent the design team did their research, listened to the voice of the patient and caregivers, and integrated evidence-based design principles….”

That’s high praise, and it is rewarding to know that the attention we paid to every detail — from furniture and flooring to treatment and waiting areas — was noticed. But it is even more rewarding to know that the center has become an incredible resource in treating those diagnosed with MS, a degenerative disease that strikes the central nervous system.

Team Swedish Bikes for Multiple Sclerosis

The Swedish S’myelin Babes, Swedish’s Bike MS team, raised more than $46,000 this year. The annual event raises funds for multiple sclerosis research and local programs to support people living with the disease.

Check out a few photos captured by Dr. Lily JungHenson from this year’s event:

Dozens of Swedish-Affiliated Physicians Recognized as 'Top Doctors' by Their Peers



SEATTLE, August 16, 2013 - Now in its 13th year, Seattle magazine recently published the results of their annual 'Top Doctors' survey in the July issue. As in past years, dozens of Swedish-affiliated (or credentialed) physicians were recognized in the popular issue due to being nominated by their peers.

Additionally, Seattle Metropolitan magazine published the results of its 'Top Doctors' survey in the August issue, in which dozens of Swedish-affiliated (or credentialed) physicians were also featured

 

Swedish Disseminates Information Intended to Educate, Clarify Medicare Charge Data, Related Questions

SEATTLE, June 24, 2013 - As part of the Obama administration’s work to make the United States health-care system more affordable and accountable, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released 2011 data in early May that shows significant variation across the country and within communities in what providers charge for common services. These data include information comparing the charges for the 100 most common inpatient services and 30 common outpatient services.  Providers determine what they will charge for items and services provided to patients and these charges are the average amount the providers bill for an item or service. The following information is intended to help patients and family members better understand this complicated topic.

Supporting the March for Babies

Dr. Packia Raj and I helped with the March of Dimes Walk (March for Babies) on Saturday, May 4th at the Seattle Center.



The March for Babies is the longest-running and most widely recognized walking event in the nation with 2013 marking its 75th anniversary. This fundraiser incorporated thousands of volunteers participating in a fun-filled day of walking to raise money in support of lifesaving research and programs to make sure every baby gets a chance for a healthy start in life... 
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