WAHA’s mission has two parts:
Access – provide access to local health care services.
Advancement – facilitate the transformation of the local health care system.
WAHA connects residents of Whatcom County to health insurance coverage and medical care.
WAHA provides free, unbiased, and confidential information and resources to help you and your family get, keep, and use health care coverage. Our Access Counselors will also help you find a medical provider and gain access to community health care resources. We also provide care coordination and end-of-life planning services. Below is a list of programs that our Access Counselors use to help you get the care you need.
- Access to Baby and Child Dentistry (ABCD): a program designed to improve oral health and increase access to dental care for Medicaid eligible children under six years of age.
- Behavioral Health Access Program (BHAP): a program that links qualifying individuals with needed mental health and chemical dependency treatment.
- Statewide Health Insurance Benefits Advisors (SHIBA): a statewide network of trained volunteers who educate, assist, and advocate for consumers about their rights and options regarding health insurance and health care access. WAHA is the Whatcom County SHIBA HelpLine sponsor.
- Whatcom Project Access (WPA): a program that coordinates donated specialty medical care and dental care to eligible individuals and distributes care fairly between local providers while providing care coordination. WPA is a partnership with the Whatcom County Medical Society and the Mt Baker District Dental Society.
- End of Life Choices: a community-based program that will engage adult community members in planning for quality end of life care.
- The Bridge Project: assists in managing care for a cohort of high utilizing, uninsured, and underinsured patients in order to improve care quality and access while also reducing utilization and the cost of charity care at our local community hospital.
- Whatcom IMPACT Project: assists Medicare fee-for-service beneficiaries (people on ‘original Medicare’) as they leave the hospital in-patient setting. The aims are to empower patients and their family members to understand their health so they can actively maintain and manage it and thereby reduce preventable hospital readmissions.
WAHA works with key stakeholders and community partners to improve health care quality and patient satisfaction while reducing cost.
Transforming Health Care in Whatcom County is an ongoing collaborative effort that includes area providers, insurance plans, business owners, elected officials, and community members who are committed to the “triple aim”: improve population health outcomes; enhance the patient experience of care; and reduce the per capita cost. Facilitated by the Whatcom Alliance for Health Advancement (WAHA), participants are focused on meaningful system changes that require cooperation and result in greater accountability to each other and the community.
Health Policy Committee: a non-partisan group committed to developing prudent health policies that improve health care access locally. The Health Policy Committee also collaborates with Communities Connect (a statewide access coalition) to promote improvements statewide.
Whatcom Oral Health Coalition: a County-wide collaborative focused on improving oral health for all members of the community. WAHA provides leadership and administrative support for the Coalition.