Kaiser Permanente Community Benefit | 2015 Annual Report

Kaiser Permanente Community Fund     |     Financials     |     Leadership message


Low income icon

Care for low-income people

More people than ever have health insurance. But many still need help getting and paying for care. We remain committed to helping low-income people in our community have the resources they need for a healthy life.

Thanks to Kaiser Permanente, Operation Walk USA, and Project Access NOW, Doug Smith was able to receive 2 hip replacements at no cost.

“I don’t have the right words to thank everyone for this awesome gift. I’m thankful every day of the year.”
—Doug Smith, Stayton, Oregon


14,567 people

who need help paying for care used our Medical Financial Assistance program in 2015 to help reduce or remove their burden.

41,366 members

in our Medicaid program now have access to preventive care, specialty services, and surgery at no cost. And because we know that having both medical and dental care leads to better health, we’re expanding the program to include dental care, too.

3,900 kids

who have no other access to health care get medical and dental care for free through our Child Health Program.


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Safety net partnerships

Care takes many forms. And the needs of our community are diverse. We partner with organizations that are finding new ways to care for the uninsured and underserved. This includes finding out who isn’t getting the care they need — and why. Together, we work to close those gaps by providing care for different cultural, economic, and language needs. Our safety net partners include Federally Qualified Health Centers, school-based health centers, and public health departments.

Watch video on You Tube
Warriors of Wellness Program, Oregon Community Health Workers Association


“Community health workers work with individuals on resumes for employment, in securing housing and identifying sustainable food resources. These are things that need to be addressed while supporting individuals in obtaining the best health outcomes possible.”
—Celia Higueras, Oregon Community Health Workers Association


50,000 people

were screened for substance abuse, and 1,100 people received treatment or other services through the Behavioral Health Services for Vulnerable Communities initiative.

resulted from our capacity-building grants ($200,000), and grantees leveraged an additional $912,000 from other sources.


was invested in partnership with Providence Health & Services to build primary care capacity in our region.

45 leaders

from safety net organizations participated in leadership development or other clinical training opportunities.

13,000 women

received breast health education, and more than 1,100 women received donated mammograms and other care through the Latina Initiative. This program helps Latinas navigate the health system, get care in their languages, and understand the power of preventive care.


Watch video on You Tube
The Latina Initiative: Reducing Disparities in Late-Stage Breast Cancer Diagnosis


Community Health initiative

Community health initiatives

We know that great medical care alone isn’t enough. Community plays an important role in prevention and total health. That’s why we support healthy communities where we live, learn, work, and play.

Community partner Playworks improves the health and well-being of children by increasing opportunities for physical activity and meaningful play.

Watch video on youtube
"Choose Play" video by Playworks


“Prior to our work with Playworks, students would often be seen wandering around the playground, not engaged in play. Now, children are regularly engaged in productive, active play. On any given day, you may see children playing wall ball, four square, playing on the play structure, and engaging in imaginary play.”
—Tracy Schuster, principal, Hearthwood Elementary School, Vancouver, Washington


15,000 students, staff, and family

participated in the Fire Up Your Feet physical activity challenge, part of our Thriving Schools initiative.

$1.5 million

was awarded to 6 communities to reduce the burden of chronic disease through healthy eating and active living in community settings, as part of our HEAL Communities initiative.

119,000 people

walked, biked, and skated through our streets and parks during Portland Sunday Parkways. This was the most participants ever!

5 new cities

adopted healthy-eating and active-living policies through HEAL Cities, a partnership with Oregon Public Health Institute. This brings the total to 29 cities.


Watch video on youtube
Kaiser Permanente Northwest is a proud partner of the Healthy Living Collaborative of SW Washington, working to advance health in the region. In 2015, the Collaborative's advocacy efforts resulted in improved water access for 6,000 students in Southwest Washington during the school day.


Community Health initiative

Research and education

We know that getting an education ties directly to having better health. And a diverse health care workforce means more people get better care. We’re committed to helping our community succeed in school, college, residencies, and careers. Plus, our Center for Health Research continues its population-based medical research. It is finding important connections between health, lifestyles, treatments, and outcomes.

Watch video on youtube
Kaiser Permanente Northwest 2015 Health Care Careers Scholarship Ceremony


Over $500,000

was awarded to more than 160 high school and college students through our Health Care Career Scholarships. This program helps young adults — especially those who are underserved — pursue their dreams of working in health care.

110 students

learned about health care career pathways through our Career Learning Programs.

17,529 children and adults

were reached through our Educational Theatre Program, in partnership with Oregon Children’s Theatre.

More than $97,000

was awarded in grants for Community-Based Education Programs.

205 research papers

were published on care access and disparities, oral health, obesity, and mental health at our Center for Health Research.

574 students

were served through our Graduate Medical Education Program.


“Being a Kaiser Scholar allowed me to go to school and opened the doorway for me to be an intern. Now I am officially an employee. It was worth the investment!”
—Eunice Jones, KPNW employee, Kaiser Permanente Scholar intern, 2015, and scholarship recipient, 2011


Community engagement

Community engagement

We know the power of collaboration. Our community partners do amazing work, and we help increase their ability to do just that through funding and partnership. We’re also proud of our own employees’ dedication to giving back. We support a workplace culture of volunteerism and even provide donations to the nonprofits where our employees spend their time volunteering.

planting tree
KPNW employees plant trees outside the Mt. Scott Learning Center in Portland during MLK Days of Service.


“It’s a great feeling when you have completed a project and can look back and say, ‘I helped make a difference.’”
—Jaenada Osburn, Kaiser Permanente employee health specialist; longtime MLK Days of Service volunteer


3,304 staff members

volunteered 10,150 hours through our KP Cares volunteer program.

549,781 people

were served through 35 grants to nonprofits where our employees volunteer.

700 volunteers

gave their time to more than 35 community nonprofits during our signature MLK Days of Service event.

$1.1 million

was raised through staff donations and our matching funds for nonprofits of our employees’ choice through our Community Giving Campaign.

175 organizations

received training in communications, board development, and fundraising. And 297 nonprofit professionals received financial support for conferences and trainings.



Community engagement

Kaiser Permanente Community Fund

The Kaiser Permanente Community Fund at the Northwest Health Foundation helps improve the health of our communities. Our initial 10-year investment was so successful, we extended the program for 2 more years. In 2015 alone, the fund awarded $1.6 million to community nonprofits. This 12-year program, funded through 2016 with grant programs continuing through 2019, has invested $32 million into 3 focus areas:

  • Early life: Supports prenatal to early childhood policies to ensure children, families, and communities have the best opportunities to thrive
  • Educational attainment: Removes institutional and system barriers to education to ensure all youth graduate from high school and are ready for college and careers
  • Economic opportunity: Supports living-wage jobs and entrepreneurship for populations disproportionately affected by poverty


$32 million

was invested into the fund over 12 years to improve health, education, and economic opportunity for our communities.

171 grants

were given to 114 community nonprofits to start and expand programs that improve the health and well-being of our Northwest neighbors.


2015 community investment

More than $141,600,000

in total community investments

  • $125,024,924 in care and coverage for low-income people
    • Medical Financial Assistance program
    • Medicaid program
    • Child Health Program
    • Grants and donations for care and coverage
  • $1,258,183 in safety net partnerships
    • Safety net programs and services
    • Grants and donations for community clinics and other safety net providers
  • $2,658,439 in community health initiatives
    • Community Health Initiatives programs and services
    • Thriving Schools initiative
    • Grants and donations for community-based prevention
  • $9,859,694 in research and education
    • Educational Theatre Program
    • Community Health Careers initiative
    • Graduate Medical Program
    • Center for Health Research support
    • Grants and donations for health care professional training and education
  • $2,801,645 in community engagement and other community benefit
    • Employee engagement programs
    • Nonprofit organization capacity-building
    • Strategic partnerships with nonprofit organizations
    • Community Benefit activities
    • Grants and donations for access, education, and economic opportunity


Leadership message

Dear friends,

At Kaiser Permanente, we take a wide view of the lives of our patients and community members. Good health is not created solely within the confines of an exam room. While we can treat disease and bind a broken bone, we must also understand the lives of our patients in their communities outside of our clinics.

The stories in this annual report show that by collaborating with community leaders, we can create better opportunities for health. Although the challenges are often daunting, we have found that the solutions are in the community, already in existence or being developed. They just need to be lifted up.

Often the solutions require a comprehensive approach, including advocating for changes in government policy. In 2011, we cofounded the Oral Health Funders Collaborative, which commissioned reports examining Emergency Department use and hospital stays related to oral disease. In 2014, the Oregon Oral Health Strategic Plan was completed. In 2015, the first state director of dental health was appointed. This was a key accomplishment, codified in state law, to create consistent leadership to implement and evolve oral health policy.

This long-term collaboration is a good reminder that we rarely accomplish anything alone. The progress in oral health policy is just 1 example of how, working with community groups in common commitment to a goal, we are making a difference in improving the health of our members and the communities we serve.


Andrew R. McCulloch

Kaiser Foundation Hospitals and
Health Plan of the Northwest

Dr. Dacones

Imelda Dacones, MD

President and Executive Medical Director
Northwest Permanente, PC

Dr. Snyder

John J. Snyder, DMD

CEO and Dental Director
Permanente Dental Associates