Hospital Patient Information and Charity Care

As a result of DOH's response to the unprecedented Covid-19 pandemic, the number of available resources has been impacted. Responses to inquiries by phone or email may be significantly delayed.

Hospitals in Washington cannot deny patients access to care based on an inability to pay. RCW 70.170 and WAC 246-453 require hospitals to develop charity care policies, procedures and sliding fee schedules to ensure that all patients with family incomes below 100% of the federal poverty guidelines are able obtain medically necessary hospital health care free of charge, and patients with family incomes up to 200% of the federal poverty guidelines are able to obtain that care at a discount. Charity care may also be called financial assistance, bridge assistance, or other names.

How to get information about Charity Care

If you or a family member need information about applying for financial assistance for a hospital bill, please contact the hospital directly, using the contact information they are required to print on your billing statement. Each hospital's approved charity care policy is available at the link below:

If you think a hospital is not following its approved charity care policy, has unfairly denied you charity care coverage, or refuses to give you a charity care application, you may file a complaint with the department.

The department publishes an annual report on hospital charity care.


Email CharityCare@doh.wa.gov or call 360-236-4210 with charity care questions