Health care CEOs are increasingly motivated to address disparities and patient outcomes. Preliminary research by the Health Evolution Forum, in fact, found three-fifths of participating CEOs ranked health equity, diversity and affordability among their top 3 priorities for the next one to three years.
“The key question is how health care CEOs can best set up their organization to tackle these disparities by both increasing their responsiveness to disparities in clinical care and increasing the diversity of internal leadership in meaningful ways,” said Mark Smith, former Founding President & CEO, California Health Care Foundation.
While answering that question is a complicated matter, what has become clear is that building a higher quality, more resilient health care system based on prevention, affordability, access, equity, and outcomes must be led by data — and health care executives at the forefront are recognizing the opportunity and necessity to advance equity by including it in what has traditionally been quality and safety work. Whether the goal is improving primary care, digital health, community health workers, or adopting alternative payment models, it’s critical that equity work is at the center of it all.
“Equity work is quality work. The moment we start to separate them, it gets very challenging to understand why,” said Tosan Boyo, Senior Vice President of Hospital Operations, John Muir Health.