Breaking Ground: Lisa Sloane '07

By: 

  • Lisa Sloane, MHA '07
May 7, 2018
Lisa Sloane, MHA '07

Many health care administrators turn to value-based care as a delivery model to improve care processes and quality. These improvements often achieve better patient outcomes and decrease health care costs for providers and patients alike—a win-win.

Our current value-based health care delivery system is rooted in the seminal report, “Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health System for the 21st Century.” That glorious work identified six dimensions for health system and patient care improvements: safety, efficiency, effectiveness, patient-centeredness, timeliness and equity.

I often say that equity is the forgotten aim.

There are several aspects of health care equity, one of which is identifying and resolving racial and ethnic disparities in care. My company, Multimedia in Healthcare Inc., has surveyed nearly 100 hospitals about their disparities resolution practices. We found that nearly 100 percent of hospitals collect patient race, ethnicity and language data, but less than 10 percent have taken the next step of stratifying quality measures for the purpose of identifying and resolving health disparities. 

Disparities resolution is not only the right thing to do, there is a business case as well. The Health Resources and Services Administration’s 2017 Health Equity Report, released in April, states that “marked disparities are found in a number of health indicators,” including diabetes, cardiovascular disease and breast cancer, among others. The very chronic conditions that, when managed properly, can push us over the cost savings threshold.

Creating an environment that embraces health care equity starts at the top, and it is often unlikely that those impacted by care disparities are close enough to the C-suite to create awareness.

Another aspect of health care equity is diversity and inclusion among health system teams. A survey by the American Hospital Association showed that only 11 percent of executive positions are held by minorities, down a percentage point from 2013. And a measly 14 percent of board positions are filled with people of color or other minority representatives.

Creating an environment that embraces health care equity starts at the top, and it is often unlikely that those impacted by care disparities are close enough to the C-suite to create awareness.

The College of Public Health’s Master of Health Administration (MHA) program plays a leading role in moving the dial on the forgotten aim of health care equity. Leaders such as Dr. Julie Robbins are partnering with the HSMP Alumni Society’s diversity committee, of which I chair. Together, we have adopted goals associated with improving the experiences of underrepresented students and alumni.

I predict the impact we’ll have on diversity and inclusion in our program and among our alumni will have a ripple effect on health systems. We are creating pathways to executive-level positions for graduates, and are with them along the way. Our work extends to all graduates of the college who impact disparities in care. Together we will make U.S. health care teams recognized worldwide for being trusted providers of care regardless of our individual differences.

Lisa R. Sloane is the founder and CEO of Multimedia In Healthcare Inc. in Cincinnati, Ohio, which helps health care providers create robust health equity programs. She earned her Master of Health Administration from CPH in 2007, and is currently the chair of the HSMP Alumni Society’s diversity committee. Email Lisa at lisaatgo2mih [dot] com if you want to learn more about the diversity committee’s strategies or join.

Published in the spring/summer 2018 issue of Ohio State Public Health. 

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About The Ohio State University College of Public Health

The Ohio State University College of Public Health is a leader in educating students, creating new knowledge through research, and improving the livelihoods and well-being of people in Ohio and beyond.  The College’s divisions include biostatistics, environmental health sciences, epidemiology, health behavior and health promotion, and health services management and policy.   It is ranked 23rd among all colleges of public health in the U.S. by U.S. News and World Report, and also includes the top 7-ranked MHA degree program.  The College provides leadership and expertise for Ohio and the world through its Center for Health Outcomes, Policy and Evaluation Studies (HOPES), Center for Public Health Practice (CPHP), and Center for the Advancement of Tobacco Science (CATS).