Beyond disability and picturing capability: Kaiser Permanente South Bay and White House Champions of Change

When I visited Kaiser Permanente South Bay, in Harbor City, Los Angeles in July, 2014 (Innovation in Collaboration: What 18F and Kaiser Permanente South Bay have in common | Ted Eytan, MD), it was to see a different innovation than the one that brought Kaiser Permanente South Bay (@KPSouthBay) to The White House (@WhiteHouse) – Disability Employment Champions of Change (see: Disability Employment Champions Of Change | The White House).

Project Search

Kaiser Permanente South Bay is the first Kaiser Permanente site in Southern California to have the Project SEARCH program. This program partners with Best Buddies, LAUSD and the Harbor Regional Center to provide internships for young adults with developmental disabilities. The goal is to give them the work experience they need so that as they “age out” of the services that the Harbor Regional Center provides, they can secure employment and become independent, productive citizens.

The project has a blog and the commitment of Kaiser Permanente South Bay is very much appreciated by its community:

Kaiser Permanente South Bay learned that the Project SEARCH internship program has been successful elsewhere, and they were willing to take a chance on something new for their medical center. From the highest level of administration to each individual employee, they have embraced the project and the vision behind it. They have demonstrated full commitment to the process, encouraging their staff to take on new training and supervision responsibilities with young and inexperienced interns. And they have given our young interns the necessary support to make them successful.

The blog and Best Buddies web site (@BestBuddiesCA) discuss how Project Search has changed the lives of not just the interns but the medical center, which cares for a population of about 230,000 people. You can read about the success stories of the interns including Miguel Gallardo – Now Hired after his rotation through South Bay. (Miguel Gallardo – Now Hired! | South Bay Project SEARCH).

We’re so glad Robert (Bob) Blair, the Chief Administrative Officer of Kaiser Permanente South Bay made the trip to celebrate the White House Champions of Change. You know that feeling when you meet people who are leading in one area, and then you find out that’s tip of the iceberg?

As is customary, we welcome Kaiser Permanente innovators (and all staff) to “their” Center for Total Health as a stop at home when they are away from home. We also got a shot of Bob in front of the other home he was invited to visit 🙂 .

Thanks for leading in inclusion, innovation, collaboration, culture of caring, for your members, staff, nurses, doctors, Kaiser Permanente South Bay. I have a feeling we’ll be seeing more of you in the near future …

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Ted Eytan, MD