Health Equity: Delivering Care to Diverse Populations
At Children’s Health, we are always working to ensure that our patients have access to the resources, tools, and high-quality care they need to thrive both today and in the future. By recognizing and working to eliminate health disparities, we can further our mission to make life better for children.
What is Health Equity?
Health equity is the fair and just opportunity for everyone to achieve their highest level of health. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation states, “This requires removing obstacles to health such as poverty, discrimination, and their consequences, including powerlessness and lack of access to good jobs with fair pay, quality education and housing, safe environments, and health care.” At Children’s Health, we believe in providing optimal care to every child that comes through our doors regardless of race, religion, or socioeconomic status. It is this belief in the power of prioritizing health equity in everything we do that has made us consistently one of the top recognized children’s hospitals in the country. Our ever-present goal is to create a safe, culturally competent space for every child to receive medical care void of inequality and disparity.
How do we achieve Health Equity?
Achieving health equity, addressing disparities, and improving the health of all patients is an overarching goal at Children’s Health. With the collection of self-reported REaL data, promotion of social determinants of health screenings across the system, collaborations with community-based organizations, and cross-collaborative education that directly impact our patient population, Children’s Health has started a health equity journey that will allow every person to attain their full health potential.
What is Health Inequality?
Health inequities are unfair, unjust, and avoidable differences in quality, cost, or access to care, that lead to disparities. These are reflected in differences in length of life; quality of life; rates of disease, disability, and death; severity of disease; and access to treatment due to a person’s social, economic, or environmental conditions.
What are Health Disparities?
A health disparity exists when an outcome is seen to a greater or lesser extent between populations. Health disparities adversely affect groups of people who have systematically experienced greater obstacles to health based on their racial or ethnic group; religion; socioeconomic status; gender; age; mental health; cognitive, sensory, or physical disability; sexual orientation or gender identity; geographic location; or other characteristics historically linked to discrimination or exclusion (healthypeople.gov). Disparities in health and in the key determinants of health are the metric for assessing progress toward health equity (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation).
At Children’s Health, we believe in providing optimal care to every child that comes through our doors regardless of race, religion, or socioeconomic status. It is this belief in the power of prioritizing health equity in everything we do that has made us consistently one of the top-recognized children’s hospitals in the country. Our ever-present goal is to create a safe, culturally competent space for every child to receive medical care void of inequality and disparity.
How is Children’s Health involved?
The Equity of Care Pledge (#123forEquity) is a national campaign to eliminate health care disparities. The #123forEquity campaign asks hospital and health care system leaders to start taking action to accelerate progress that can improve health equity in the following areas:
- Increase the collection and use of race, ethnicity, and language preference REaL data
- Increase cultural competency training
- Increase diversity in leadership and governance
- Improve and strengthen community partnerships
Children’s Health signed the Equity of Care Pledge in 2016. We are among only 1,704 health care systems nationwide, and only 131 in Texas, who have committed to addressing disparities by making the Equity of Care Pledge. Children’s Health is committed to ensuring that all our patients have the opportunity to achieve their highest level of health. By working to improve health equity in North Texas, we can make life better for children and the communities where they live. Below is a snippet of the work being done in this area:
- Research and Data Collection: Our goal is to invest in research and data to understand the health inequities that exist for our patients’ community. This includes our Beyond ABC report, collection of REaL data and social determinants of health (SDOH) data for our patients, and our Diversity & Inclusion Impact Report.
- Workforce + Operations: Our nearly 10,000 team members have access to education, training and programs dedicated to identifying, understanding, and addressing health inequities in our patient population.
- Care for Underserved Patients and Communities: We are a leader in health equity because we care for diverse patients and communities in North Texas.
Document Diversity & Inclusion Impact Report
Meet the Team
Stormee Williams, MD, MBA, FAAP Vice President & Chief Health Equity Officer
Jennifer Clark, MS, LSSYB Senior Equitable Care Director
Forest Melton, MS, MHA Program Manager
Kristina Hill, MPH, MIS Health Equity Scientist
Contact Health Equity
1935 Medical District Drive