The COVID-19 pandemic required all Brigham Health (BH) staff to develop new ways of communicating and working together across our common organizational boundaries. The BH COVID-19 Equity, Diversity and Community Health Response Team established in April engages staff across our system to assess and respond equity issues the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. The group works to address the needs of patients, employees and our communities. Most recently, the meetings have focused on equitable vaccine distribution, virtual care access and the dramatic rise of food and housing insecurity.
It has been so inspirational to see the Equity Response team come together in the face of significant health inequities and racial injustices. The space created by this group has become extremely important in building understanding, relationships and mobilizing on action to advance equity.
At our twice monthly meeting, attendees hear important equity updates as well as participate in smaller group discussions. All staff are welcome to a space that feels safe, welcoming and honest. Participants consistently cite the importance of having their contributions valued and the power of connecting with staff across traditional boundaries. Group engagement is strong and racially diverse, with over 90 attendees at our last meeting. The team is led by Wanda McClain, Dr. Cheryl Clark, Michelle Keenan, Tracy Sylven and project manager RonAsia Rouse, and it is informed by a multidisciplinary and passionate group of “equity huddle” members. If you are interested in participating, please reach out to us!
Senior Director, Health Equity and Social Innovation
Center for Community Health and Health Equity
Program Manager, Health Equity
Center for Community Health
and Health Equity