As the weather is turning cooler, we are ramping up our activities this Fall.  With your help, we are initiating new activities this month:  an initial in-person meeting in Spokane, WA; a periodic professional member video call and further development of a book called, "Magic Words: the Secret Language of Health Care" (working title). We are also doing more public presentations.  We can't do it without your help!  We are very grateful to Ashley Carlson who serves as our first part-time staff person, but still utilize the time and talent of many, many volunteers to help bring our community quality programs and information. If you are new to the WASHAA community, please take a look at our agenda and plan on registering for our Annual Meeting November 2 (see link below). Together, we are helping more people
become more fully engaged as Participants (instead of Patients) in their care.

Upcoming Events:
- September 28th - A Conversation About Health Advocacy in Spokane  REGISTER
- October 12th - Chronic Illness Webinar  REGISTER
- October 23rd - Insurance Questions Answered via Facebook Live - Submit your questions  here
- November 2nd - WASHAA 5th Annual Meeting Early-Bird Registration Open
Here is to your good health,

Robin Shapiro
Chair, WASHAA Board

Join Us In Spokane THIS Thursday, September 28!

Health Advocacy is the act of supporting people navigating the health system to help them find the best care possible -- but all health care is local.  Please join us for a first discussion in Spokane to assess and understand the specific needs of the Spokane community. This meeting is free and we hope to include medical providers, patients, patient safety organizations, insurance representatives, educators and health advocates.

Why Attend:
* Increase community support for patients and families navigating health care
* Learn about what Independent Health Advocates do
* Who is doing this work in the state
* Who is hiring Health Advocates
* What is happening nationally to support health advocates
* Discuss opportunities to leverage people in the community to empower patients
Calling all Paid Advocates: Take The National Health and Patient Advocate Survey by October 10!

For the third year in a row, WASHAA is leading the effort to collect data from professional paid advocates to understand advocate practices, satisfaction and the background and experience of advocates. The survey is open to all paid advocates. It takes just a few minutes (averaging less than 5 minutes to complete the anonymous survey). To take this year's survey, please complete it before October 10 at:

October 12th Webinar on Chronic Illness

Are you living with a chronic illness?  You are not alone! Chronic illness is expected to affect 157 million people in the US by the year 2020, with 81 million people having multiple conditions. Living with chronic illness can impact many areas of life and the effects can leave individuals isolated and alone.  In addition to physical symptoms from chronic illness, individuals can experience many losses -- a loss of a sense of self and of what you thought your life was going to be like.  These losses can lead to anxiety and depression. Some illnesses are ongoing, while others come with flare-ups and periods of remission.

Join our WASHAA community as we learn more about the topic:
Living with Chronic Illness: Managing the Ups and Downs of
Life with Ongoing Illness
When: 10-11 am, Thursday, October 12, 2017
Cost: Free for WASHAA Members**, $5 for non-WASHAA members 
**Registration is required in order to attend.

Our speaker, Allison Fine, MSW, LICSW, founder and executive director for the Center for Chronic Illness, will discuss the challenges of living with chronic illness and multiple strategies and skills for managing those challenges.  She has a broad understanding of the emotional challenges that individuals living with chronic illness face and will identify helpful community resources that can improve overall emotional well being. 
Patient No More Presentation at Phinney Neighborhood Village
Free on October 18 at 10 am

Join Robin Shapiro, from WASHAA (the Washington State Health Advocacy Association) and the Phinney Neighborhood Village Wednesday, October 18 at 10:00 am in Greenwood for a free session to learn more about how to improve your health care experience with skills and insights into becoming more active in your own health. Everyone has the ability to seek better choice and control in health care decision-making.  This session will review some of the most important ways people can become full Participants by applying common health advocacy skills. Be ready for an interactive, hands-on session, with must-know tips for anyone who has ever assisted family, friends or themselves in navigating the health care system. Community members who want to attend this session for free should contact Rebecca Fogarty  or 206-789-1217.

Do You Have Insurance Questions related to the Open Enrollment Period?
Facebook Live on October 23 @ 2pm (PST)
We are fortunate to have two advocates in our community who are willing to answer basic insurance questions as open enrollment is coming up.  Karen Vogel is an independent professional advocate who works with clients on a variety of insurance issues.  Molly Lanzinger is a licensed insurance broker who understands the difference and advantages of various insurance plans in Washington state.  Stay tuned for a live event October 23 at 2 pm PT where they will try to answer your questions.  You can submit questions here via Google Forms-- It's quick and easy: or by emailing .
Karen and Molly also recommend these top three tips:
  • Don't miss open enrollment! It starts November 1 and ends December 15 for commercial insurance (Medicare starts Oct 15).
  • Make sure your doctor will be "in-network" next year - don't assume! Provider networks are shrinking.
  • Read the fine print about your coverage, even if you're not switching - benefits change every year.
WASHAA 5th Annual Meeting on November 2nd!

When: Thursday, November 2, 2017
Time: 9am - 2pm (Lunch provided)

The location and date have moved from years past. Please mark your calendars for Thursday, November 2nd from 9am to 2pm.

WASHAA's Fifth Annual Meeting will focus on Health Advocacy Tools that Everyone Can Use. Our agenda will include presentations on health advocacy technology, medication management, choosing the right treatment.  We are also fortunate to have Karen Curtiss, founder of Campaign Zero in Chicago joining us as the opening speaker and to share the latest tools and tips for staying safe in the hospital.  To register, please visit:

  • September 28 - A Conversation About Health Advocacy in person meeting in Spokane, WA (FREE!) - Register
  • October 12 - Webinar on Chronic Illness - Register
  • October 18 - 10am - Patient No More - Sponsored by the Phinney Neighborhood Village
  • October 23 @ 2pm (PST) - WASHAA to answer your Open Enrollment Insurance questions - Submit your questions
  • November 2, 2017 - 9 am to 2 pm :  WASHAA Annual Meeting -- Take a look at the Agenda and Register Today.

Washington State Health Advocacy Association
E-mail us | Call us:  206.377.3000 | Visit us online