VIDA is a project of Justice, Access, Support, and Solutions (JAZZ) for Health, which also encompasses Casa de Salud Family Medical Office and a team of UNMH/Pathways Collaborative health navigators. VIDA's mission is to promote health and reduce harmful systemic patterns of inequality in healthcare through informed, data-driven solutions. VIDA works with community groups, political leaders, and patients to identify systemic barriers to healthy Bernalillo County communities, and advocates for policy changes that address these obstacles.
Through a series of meetings with community advocates, health care workers, and policy makers, we have identified key gaps in existing services that provide unique opportunities for systemic change. First and foremost is access to affordable, high-quality services for under-served patients, including undocumented immigrants, across the continuum of their medical care. Second is the lack of care – both adequate primary and urgent care services – and the resulting overcrowding of local emergency departments. Hospital pricing and billing policies that penalize uninsured patients and lead to crippling medical debt for many local residents is our third focus. Our fourth focus is the lack of sufficient services for the treatment of people living with drug addictions.
Where We Come From
VIDA has grown from the successes and accomplishments of the Community Coalition for Health Access (CCHA). The CCHA began in 2002 as a collaborative coalition whose goal was to increase access to culturally relevant healthcare for Bernalillo County residents regardless of income, insurance, citizenship, or tribal status. Via community education, participation in structural health policy change, and supportive health systems navigation, the CCHA has helped to change local health systems and policies to improve healthcare access, equity, and affordability.
In 2010, the advocacy arm of CCHA was renamed Vision for Dignity, Access, and Accountability in Healthcare (VIDA) and formally joined the non-profit organization JAZZ for Health.
Hadley began working with Casa de Salud in 2012 as a Health Apprentice and Medical Debt Case Manager. Last year she began working for VIDA as a Community Organizer. In this position she works with patients, apprentices, staff, and other local organizations to create change in our county to improve heathcare access and affordability
Laura Price-Waldman was born and raised in Albuquerque. She received her bachelor's degree in Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies from Macalester College in St. Paul, MN. She has worked as a community organizer and a legal advocate, and is currently a first-year student in the Masters of Social Work program at New Mexico Highlands University. As a case manager at Casa de Salud, she helps people access resources and navigate complex social service systems. Laura is also a small-scale goat farmer and loves being outside/ in the sun whenever she can.
We have big news here at VIDA! Starting in 2015 VIDA will receive $50,000 per year for three years from the Con Alma Health Foundation. This generous grant will be used to support our work improving and expanding the health safety net in Bernalillo County.
Also, in January, Pathways will officially become part of VIDA. We look forward to continuing our work with our Pathways navigator.