WA Healthcare Authority Jumps Into Social Equity, Race Programs
The WA State Healthcare Authority is the state agency that provides health services by way of Apple Healthcare, the Public Employees Benefits Board (PEBB), and School Employees Benefits Board (SEBB). Now, they are taking on social justice and equity tasks.
Healthcare Authority launches new directive
This week, the HCA announced the launching of what is called the PEAR Program, or the Pro-Equity Anti-Racism Plan and Playbook.
Based upon a directive from Gov. Inslee, and coordinating with his new Office of Equity, the HCA seeks to accomplish the following (from the information they released):
"The purpose of PEAR is to foster an environment that creates belonging and establishes a pro-equity and anti-racist culture for HCA employees and the people we work with and serve"
The plan lays out much of its functions here:
"Determinants of equity are the driving factors that impact the overall quality of life for all Washingtonians. The state has identified 15 determinants of equity: economic justice:
food systems, housing and home ownership, state and local practices environment and natural resources
early childhood development jobs and job training
community and public service education, justice systems and laws
transportation and mobility digital access, health and human services community and economic development digital literacy
Eliminating disparities in access, practices and procedures, quality of services, and programs in these 15 determinants of equity correlate to better outcomes for people and a Washington where all can thrive."
A variety of studies will be conducted by the new HCA program, including this one:
"An analysis of how power, privilege, and oppression impact our experience of our social identities."
The new Office of Equity will be implementing similar programs in every sector of Washington state government going forward.