Equity in health care refers to care that is provided equally to all, regardless of characteristics like race, gender, and socioeconomic status. Despite advances in health care science, in the United States and worldwide there are differences in life expectancy and other health outcomes that are associated with social factors such as gender, ethnicity, religion, socioeconomic status, geographic location, sexual orientation, and gender identity. This should not be so. There are no publically reported measures of equitable care at this time.
What is UAB Medicine doing to improve?
To address inequality issues both internally and externally, UAB Medicine in 2017 established an Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion led by Deborah Grimes, chief diversity officer. In her role, Grimes works to provide leadership and planning for diversity initiatives to improve UAB Medicine’s ability to provide more equitable care.
In 2018, UAB Medicine received the LGBTQ Healthcare Equality Leader designation for the third year in a row from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation, in its latest edition of the Healthcare Equality Index (HEI). The HEI survey found that UAB Medicine earned top marks in meeting nondiscrimination and training criteria for its staff and in non-discrimination policies for employees.
For more information about diversity at UAB Medicine, visit the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion website at uabmedicine.org/diversity.