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Health and Human Services Transformation

VISION: By 2020, the people of King County will experience significant gains in health and well-being because our community worked collectively to make the shift from a costly, crisis-oriented response to health and social problems, to one that focuses on prevention, embraces recovery, and eliminates disparities.


How are health and human services changing?


Building equity in our community:
  • Removing barriers, such as access to affordable, healthy foods, that limit the ability of some communities and residents to fulfill their full potential.
  • Implementing King County's equity and social justice agenda so a person's race or neighborhood does not determine how healthy they are or how long they live. 
Working in new ways:
  • Moving our services from silos that are difficult for people to navigate to a coordinated approach that is more efficient for us and more convenient for residents. 
  • Providing only the services that people need, and only when they need them.
Investing in what works:
  • Prevention is the most effective, least expensive way to avoid costly negative outcomes such as chronic disease, domestic violence, mental illness, and homelessness.
  • Embracing innovative strategies and partnerships like The Seattle Foundation grants that allow communities to take a leadership role and address the specific needs of neighborhoods. 
  • Using data-informed approaches to ensure we are using the best evidence to get the outcomes we want. 

Transformation video


Transformation in action

Familiar Faces_King County
King County's Familiar Faces Initiative

  • For individuals who are high utilizers of the jail or who have a mental health or substance abuse condition.
  • Improved access to person-centered, integrated, culturally competent services when, where, and how people need them.
  • Key outcomes include improved health status, housing stability, and reduced criminal justice involvement.

Communities of Opportunity_King County
Communities of Opportunity

  • $1.5 million in investments over the next three years to confront inequities in South King County.
  • Bring private and public grants to underinvested communities, with a shared agenda for breaking down siloed efforts.
  • Increase civic engagement and community and youth leadership.

Youth Action Plan_King County
Best Starts for Kids Initiative

  • Invests in prevention and early intervention to help ensure every child in King County reaches his or her full potential.
  • Focuses on the early years and key developmental stages. Best Starts for Kids is informed by King County's Youth Action Plan.
  • The proposed ordinance draws upon the latest science and expertise from a wide range of community partners. If approved by Council, it will go to voters for consideration on the November 2015 ballot.

Accountable Community of Health_King County
Accountable Community of Health

  • Designed to accelerate better health and well-being by bringing partners together around shared goals they can't achieve on their own.
  • Currently under design in King County and other regions across the state.
  • Part of Washington state's "Healthier Washington" roadmap.

Physical-Behavioral Health_King County
Physical/Behavioral Health Integration

  • Comprehensive approach to integrate mental health and substance abuse disorder services into one managed care treatment system.
  • More flexibility in how we provide services, especially those with substance abuse disorders.
  • Improved health and social outcomes through improved coordination of care.

Equity and Social Justice_King County
Office of Equity and Social Justice

  • We recognize that our economy and quality of life depends on the ability of everyone to contribute.
  • King County is removing barriers that limit the ability of some to fulfill their potential by embedding equity in the budget process and becoming a more diverse employer.

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