The American Medical Association, in collaboration with Boston-based Brogham and Women’s Hospital and the Joint Commision, has introduced a new learning network aimed to assist American Health Systems in applying equity to every facet of quality and safety procedures, thereby enhancing health outcomes for historically underrepresented communities.
By utilizing high-performance quality and safety practices and technologies, the program will provide participating American healthcare delivery operations with the tools they require to progress racial justice and equity for their individuals. The program will enable health systems to identify and address inequities as a necessary component of their healthcare provision.
According to AMA, the Peer Network will initially include eight health systems who will collaborate to ensure that an understanding of health equity is better ingrained in each of their individual methods of healthcare delivery practices. The institutions participating include the Atlantic Medical Group, Ochsner Health, University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinic, and the Vanderbilt University Medical Center.
The institutions will integrate a strategy which combines patient-centered methods for ensuring the quality and safety of treatment with thorough structural assessments of racism and equality to support the ultimate goal of providing every patient with high-quality and equitable care. The strategic plan includes advancing physician’s knowledge of public health and structural and social factors that influence health and inequality, empowering physicians to eliminate systemic racism and related oppressive systems, and equipping physicians and healthcare organizations to improve relationships, services, technology, and payment structures that promote public health equity.
AMA will attempt to use a multitude of methods. Firstly, the AMA peer network will incorporate strong practices and implementation strategies for systematically identifying and correcting the sources of disparities. AMA will also provide expert consultation for public and social health systems to make the connection between operational equity endeavors and the strategy to successfully address social and structural causes of health. Additionally, the program will broaden education relating to equality by facilitating peer-to-peer learning. Finally, AMA’s Peer Network will establish a pathway for leaders to redesign equitable health care models.
In a press release issued by Brigham and Women’s Hospital, AMA President Gerald E. Harmon, M.D has stated, “Through collaborations like the Peer Network, the AMA continues its work to remove the social and structural factors that interfere with patient-centered care – providing health systems with guidance to inform equitable solutions, dismantle inequities and improve health outcomes for our patients from historically marginalized communities.”