AHA Special Message: AHA Launches Health Equity Roadmap

Special Message
March 29, 2022

Learn about AHA’s new resources to support hospitals and health systems as they embark on their health equity journey

Dear Colleagues:

As you know, the AHA Board of Trustees earlier this year approved updates to the association’s vision and mission statements to more directly reflect the importance of equity in advancing the health of individuals and communities.
Today, we’re excited to announce the launch of the Health Equity Roadmap — an innovative framework to support hospitals and health systems in their efforts to become more equitable organizations and dismantle structural barriers to health and overall wellbeing.

The Health Equity Roadmap, which builds on the goals established by the National Call to Action to Eliminate Health Care Disparities and AHA’s #123forEquity Pledge, is designed to meet hospitals and health systems where they are on their equity journey. It includes customized resources and action plans, among other support tools, to guide organizations throughout the transformation process.

How You Can Get Involved

1. Take the Health Equity Transformation Assessment. Please visit our webpage to learn more about the Health Equity Transformation Assessment and register to complete the assessment for your hospital and each hospital in your health system. The self-assessment is an electronic questionnaire designed to provide hospital leaders a baseline for assessing performance and opportunities for transforming organizational policies and practices throughout their health equity journey.

2. Create Action Plans and Use AHA Resources to Assist. After you complete the self-assessment, you will receive a Health Equity Transformation Profile for your organization, as well as structured action plans and resources from our newly established Health Equity Action Library that you can use as you move along the equity continuum.

3. Join the Virtual Community. We recognize the desire for you to connect with other health care leaders who are on the journey to advancing health equity. Once you’ve completed the Health Equity Transformation Assessment, you will be invited to join the secure, online community to exchange ideas, pose questions and connect with colleagues for more in-depth conversations.

Please visit our Health Equity Roadmap webpage, and watch the short video below to learn more about this pivotal effort.

Now is the time for our field to accelerate efforts to advance diversity, equity and inclusion. The bottom line: This is the right thing to do for our patients, communities and organizations.

It’s also the right thing to do for our entire health care system, as studies have shown that racial health inequities are associated with substantial annual economic losses nationally, including at least $10 billion in illness-related lost productivity and $200 billon in premature deaths. Eliminating health inequities also can lead to improved patient engagement in their care process and better health outcomes; decreased readmissions; and improved performance in value-based contracts through better care management, among other outcomes or improvements.

The journey to health equity may have different starting points for every hospital or health system. However, transformation may be realized at each step of the process resulting in improved patient safety, more equitable business operations and healthier communities.

The AHA looks forward to our continued partnership on this incredibly important work as we strive to create a just society of healthy communities, where all individuals reach their highest potential for health.

Sincerely,

 

Wright L. Lassiter III                                                   Rick Pollack
Chair of Board of Trustees                                         President and CEO
 

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