Henry Ford Health System Honored with AHA Equity of Care Award

August 07, 2015

DETROIT – Henry Ford Health System has been named a recipient of the American Hospital Association’s (AHA) Equity of Care Award for its efforts to reduce health care disparities and promote diversity within the organization’s leadership and staff.

The AHA Equity of Care Award was created to recognize outstanding efforts among hospitals and care systems to advance equity of care to all patients, and to spread lessons learned and progress toward achieving health equity.

"We are honored to receive their distinguished award from the American Hospital Association,” says Kimberlydawn Wisdom, M.D., senior vice president of Community Health & Equity and Chief Wellness and Diversity Officer. "We continue to evaluate and enhance our strategies to ensure that the care we provide is accessible to all patients we serve.”

In 2011, the AHA joined four national health care organizations to issue a call to action to eliminate health care disparities by focusing on increasing the collection of race, ethnicity and language preference data; increasing cultural competency training; and increasing diversity in governance and leadership.

AHA President and CEO Rich Umbdenstock says Henry Ford is a “testament to the tremendous efforts underway to eliminate health care disparities and promote diversity at the local and national level.”

Henry Ford was recognized for these efforts:

  • Collects demographic data from over 90 percent of its patients and embeds that data into Equity Dashboards that are part of the overall quality and service metrics tracked by all business units to spur interventions in areas like diabetes outcomes among African American patients.
  • Uses cultural competency as an ongoing training for employees and clinicians to provide high-quality care.
  • Ongoing use of Employee Resource Groups, a Healthcare Equity Scholars Program and resident training to provide professional and personal growth opportunities for employees. These employees are often sought out by senior leaders to identify a diverse set of employees to serve on health system committees.
  • Draws from a candidate pool for director positions and above that reflects set goals for minorities and women. Their efforts have been rewarded with a 57 percent increase in minorities in top leadership levels and a 44 percent increase in females in top leadership levels from 2009 to 2014.

About Henry Ford Health System

Henry Ford Health System, one of the largest and most comprehensive integrated U.S. health care systems, is a national leader in clinical care, research and education. The system includes the 1,200-member Henry Ford Medical Group, five hospitals, Health Alliance Plan (a health insurance and wellness company), Henry Ford Physician Network, a 150-site ambulatory network and many other health-related entities throughout southeast Michigan, providing a full continuum of care. In 2014, Henry Ford provided $317 million in uncompensated care. The health system also is a major economic driver in Michigan and employs more than 23,000 employees. Henry Ford is a 2011 Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award recipient. The health system is led by CEO Nancy Schlichting. To learn more, visit HenryFord.com

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Media Contact:
David Olejarz
(313) 874-4094
David.Olejarz@hfhs.org