Join International Community Health Services (ICHS) in celebration of National Health Center Week, from Aug. 12 to 18. The national campaign, themed, “Celebrating Health Centers: Home of America’s Health Care Heroes,” raises awareness about the mission and accomplishments of America’s health centers, and the dedicated staff who bring health care to the medically underserved.
In 1973, ICHS opened as a small, volunteer-run storefront clinic in Seattle’s Chinatown-International District, providing health services for low-income Filipino and Chinese elders and immigrant families.
“ICHS grew from the vision, grit and commitment of local community activists and leaders, who believed in meeting the need for affordable, skillful and culturally sensitive health care,” said Teresita Batayola, ICHS CEO. “From these humble origins, ICHS has grown to serve nearly 31,000 patients in 2017, representing 50 different language groups, at eight clinic locations.”
ICHS invites community members to help honor this legacy and ICHS’s role as part of a nationwide network of health centers that serve more than 27 million Americans. ICHS celebrations include:
- Summer Cool Down at Holly Park clinic, Aug. 15, 11:30 am-1 pm. Cool summer refreshments and fun activities
- Fun Fest at Bellevue clinic, Aug. 16, 10 am – 1 pm. Healthy activities, prizes and information for all people of all ages
- Courtyard Celebration at International District clinic, Aug. 17, 10 am-1 pm. Something for everyone, children’s games, prizes, photo booth and more
- ICHS: Our Story at the Shoreline clinic. Start of a historical exhibit honoring ICHS’s 45-year history in the 1st floor lobby. Learn more in a recent article in the International Examiner.
“The heroes who work at ICHS to make affordable health care possible for people in need – and their efforts as clinicians, nurses, pharmacists, social workers, dentists and dental hygienists, behavioral health specialists, and much more – are at the center of this year’s National Health Center Week,” said Batayola.
Together, they produce innovative solutions to the most pressing health care issues in their communities. They reach beyond the walls of conventional medicine to address the factors that may cause sickness, such as lack of nutrition, mental illness, homelessness and substance use disorders. It is their work that has helped reduce health care costs and reduce chronic disease, generating a record of success and along with it a long tradition of bipartisan support in Congress.