Over the years, the relationships forged by The Achievable Foundation and the creation of a close-knit community gave us access to the voices of people we served and their families, helping us achieve what was once a dream: The Achievable Health Center, which focuses on people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
We heard that the most critical and unmet need was access to quality and compassionate health care for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. And we aimed to do something about it. Our clients, families and partners spoke about their experiences with the health care system and the constant need to advocate for healthcare services to serve basic needs. When access was obtained, medical professionals lacked sensitivity.
Clinicians didn’t care to listen to nor deal with patients with developmental disabilities if they displayed challenging behavior. Routine care was overlooked, while physicians focused on the disability rather than the person. In the waiting rooms, unnecessary comments was the norm. We asked ourselves, “Why does this happen? How can we improve
Our quest for answers led to a groundbreaking approach: We aspired to become the forerunners for changing the healthcare delivery system. This became the catalyst for The Achievable Health Center, which was launched in 2013.
Our dream was now a reality. The same year, we became the first Federally Qualified Health Center in California, and possibly in the nation, with services specifically tailored to serving individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families. We are proud to serve our community and the many patients in dire need of assistance.
At The Achievable Health Center, our goal is to provide life-changing experiences for
patients, families and caregivers. We achieve this by offering a wide range of services, including:
- Vital, high-quality primary, and specialty care
- Medical professionals with expertise and comfort in caring for patients with developmental disabilities and other complex medical needs
- An accessible facility and medical equipment to accommodate people with disabilities
- A welcoming environment to help ease patient anxiety
- Longer visits with physicians to eliminate the sense of being rushed
- An integrated team approach to provide a unified, holistic, developmentally-appropriate health care plan
- Care for patients of all ages
- Patient-centered medical home model of care
- On-site mental health services and neurology services, and shorter waits to access services
- Diverse, bilingual providers and staff
- A care team who listens to patients’ concerns and treats them as part of our family
- Patient care coordination services for all patients
- Insurance eligibility and enrollment assistance
- Integration with social supports, including close communication with regional centers
- Co-location with Westside Regional Center, a social service agency coordinating services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities
- Easily accessible electronic health records
We strive for patients to attain peace of mind knowing they are in good hands and can trust one place for all their health care needs. Our goal is to achieve long-term, positive health outcomes for our patients and community.
The Achievable Health Center is quickly becoming a leader in providing high-quality, comprehensive, and coordinated health care to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families throughout the Los Angeles area.
Our ultimate hope is to change the healthcare delivery system for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities throughout the state, and possibly the nation. This is a huge task; we can’t do it alone.
We’re excited to share our ideas and our model to inspire others to build similar models and create health centers throughout the country. Together, we can raise a unified voice for the health care of people with developmental disabilities and their families and make an even bigger impact.
Note: The Achievable Health Center is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under grant numbers H80CS26611, Health Center Cluster, in the amount of $426,417 and H17MC25738, Healthy Tomorrows Partnership for Children Program, in the amount of $47,062 and 65% is ﬁnanced with nongovernmental sources). This information or content and conclusions are those of the author and should not be construed as the oﬃcial position or policy of, nor should any endorsements be inferred by HRSA, HHS or the U.S. Government.