Catholic Healthcare Collaboration Aims for Comprehensive Solutions to Advance the Response to the Poor |
Archdiocese of SeattleCatholic Community Services/Catholic Housing Services of Western WashingtonPeaceHealth, Providence Health Services and Virginia Mason Franciscan Health Form New Partnership
SEATTLE, May 11, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — The Catholic Healthcare Collaboration, an innovative partnership aimed at transforming the way Catholic organizations respond to the cry of the poor and marginalized, was announced today by the Archdiocese of Seattle.
The Archdiocese, Catholic Community Services/Catholic Housing Services of Western Washington and regional Catholic health organizations, including PeaceHealth, Providence and Virginia Mason Franciscan Health. Each has signed a five-year memorandum of understanding, which begins with a $5 million total commitment to collaboration.
“We are the living Body of Christ, and together we will come out to live the Gospel by serving as Christ to those who need it most,” Bishop Paul D. Etienne said. “I am extremely grateful to each of the partners and to the religious communities who sponsor the Sisters of Providence, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace and the Sisters of St. Francis, who have lovingly provided health care to all in our communities since the 1800s. Today, the urgent need for awareness and care in our communities is so clear. It’s a time when everyone is on deck for the common good of society, and that’s just the beginning.”
The Catholic Healthcare Collaboration aims to provide more comprehensive solutions to members of the community with the greatest needs by combining the expertise and efforts of different Catholic entities. The first planned projects will help homeless people discharged from hospitals, asylum seekers and members of the community who have difficulty accessing health care.
“We look forward to working with the Archdiocese and our Catholic healthcare organizations on this vision, as it greatly benefits the communities we serve and shows how the Catholic Church is taking action to reach those on the margins,” said Michael Reichert, President of the CCS/CHS. “We are grateful to Bishop Etienne for bringing these partners together and we are grateful to all who work diligently to elevate the dignity of all people, no matter who they are or where they come from.”
Developing Catholic Collaboration in Health Care
As the first such collaboration in Western Washington, the Catholic Healthcare Collaboration is a true blend of expertise across the spectrum of health care and social services. Each partner has senior management representation on the executive sponsorship group, which develops the five-year strategy for the collaboration. The Executive Sponsoring Group has formed a Board of Directors, which will oversee and execute specific collaborative projects across the Archdiocese, which encompasses all Western Washington.
The Executive Sponsorship Group approved the first three projects developed by the Leadership Council. These projects are in their early planning stages and are expected to roll out over the next year:
Develop community health workers This project aims to expand the community health worker model, a proven and effective way to help marginalized people access health care, by increasing the number of community health workers in local communities. Potential sites for these workers will be chosen based on community input, combined with advanced data mapping to determine the areas most needed based on a unique Social Vulnerability Index score.
“This is a proven model that we hope to expand to underserved communities in washington state,” said Rose Shanrow, senior vice president and chief of mission at Virginia Mason Franciscan Health. “We are thrilled to be part of this initiative to help increase the number of community health workers in our region and improve access to physical and behavioral health care for those who need it.”
Medical Respite and Recovery Care
In keeping with Gospel values, many Catholic hospitals face challenges when releasing homeless people who do not have a safe environment to call home. Hospitals often keep patients homeless much longer than necessary because there is nowhere else to recover. This Catholic Healthcare Collaboration project aims to develop a place-based respite and recovery medical care strategy to help homeless patients who need to recover outside of a hospital setting.
“This work centers on patients experiencing homelessness and provides them with a ramp out of the street-emergency department-acute care bed-street cycle that we see too often,” said Timothy A. Zaricznyj, Ed.D., executive director of Providence Supportive Housing. “We believe we will achieve an adaptable and scalable housing and healthcare model beyond Western Washington. While this work will not solve homelessness, nor will it solve all long-stay health care issues, it will serve to address the housing and health care needs of a subset of people who have languished without adequate housing and health care resources for too long.”
Assistance to asylum seekers Asylum seekers are people who have left their country and are seeking international protection in another country from persecution and serious human rights violations. The US government welcomes asylum seekers and has a specific legal process for them to obtain asylum. This project aims to connect the most vulnerable asylum seekers currently undergoing legal proceedings with trained healthcare professionals who can complete their recommended psychosocial assessments and find appropriate support for asylum seekers affected by trauma. .
The Board of Directors will continue to meet regularly to ensure the progress of the three inaugural projects. While the team will focus on these early projects, more projects will be developed over the next five years.
“My greatest hope is that those we serve will experience the presence of Christ through our concrete actions,” Bishop Etienne said.
About the Archdiocese of Seattle
The Archdiocese of Seattle encompasses all Western Washingtonextending from Canada at Oregon and from the Cascade Mountains to the Pacific Ocean. There are 72 Catholic schools, 174 parishes, missions and pastoral centers in the archdiocese, with more than 500 weekly masses celebrated in eight languages. Archbishop Paul D. Etienne leads the archdiocese with its auxiliary bishops, Msgr. Eusebio Elizondo and bishop Frank Schuster. For more information on the Archdiocese of Seattlevisit www.archseattle.org.
About Catholic Community Services/Catholic Housing Services of Western Washington
Catholic Community Services/Catholic Housing Services (CCS/CHS) is the largest private, not-for-profit social service organization serving Western Washington. For over 100 years, the agency has compassionately provided integrated social services and quality housing to poor and vulnerable children, women and men of all faiths. Through more than 180 programs, CCS/CHS provides a range of services that meet nearly every human need, including pregnancy support, child mental health, case management, food and shelter. emergency, youth tutoring, home care, and mental health and addiction recovery. CHS develops, owns or manages more than 2,500 affordable housing units in 62 properties across Western Washington. Housing and support services are provided to homeless and special needs individuals and families, low-income seniors, agricultural workers and veterans. CCS/CHS staff and volunteers come from many faith traditions to serve and support nearly 100,000 children, women and men each year. For more information, visit ccsww.org.
Providence is a national, not-for-profit Catholic health care system comprised of a diverse family of organizations and driven by the belief that health is a human right. With 52 hospitals, more than 900 medical clinics, senior services, supportive housing and many other health and education services, the health system and its partners employ nearly 120,000 caregivers serving communities in seven States – Alaska, California, Montana, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas and Washingtonwith system offices at Renton, Washingtonand Irvine, California. Discover our vision of health for a better world on Providence.org.
PeaceHealth, based in Vancouver, Washingtonis a not-for-profit Catholic healthcare system that provides care to the communities of Washington, Oregon and Alaska. PeaceHealth has more than 15,000 caregivers, a group practice with more than 1,200 providers, and 10 medical centers serving urban and rural communities in the Northwest. In 1890, the Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace founded what became PeaceHealth. The Sisters shared their expertise and transferred their wisdom from one medical center to another, always finding the best way to meet the unmet health care needs in their communities. Today, PeaceHealth is the legacy of the Founding Sisters and continues with a spirit of respect, stewardship, collaboration, and social justice in fulfilling its mission. Visit us online at peacehealth.org.
About Virginia Mason Franciscan Health
Virginia Mason Franciscan Health is a world-class healthcare system serving the Puget Sound area washington state, providing access to some of the most prestigious experts and hospitals in the country, recognized internationally for their superior quality. Our vast system draws on the strength of our more than 300 care sites, including 11 leading hospitals, 18,000 team members and 5,400 employed physicians, advanced practice providers (APPs) and community providers to improve the health of our communities. Together, we provide patient-centric care that is easily accessible, instantly responsive and digitally connected. Learn more at vmfh.org.
SOURCE Archdiocese of Seattle