Sg2 Seeks to Extend Our Partnership With You Into Social Justice
Black Lives Matter. Sg2 joins those raising their voices against the injustice long endured.
Our nation today is confronting the convergence of crises: a viral outbreak and systemic inequity. Provider systems have a role to play at that intersection. Thus we must also explicitly say Black Health Matters.
There is no dispute that we, as an industry, have fallen short ensuring equal access to exceptional, affordable care for all Americans. Social and economic disparities disproportionately disadvantage minority communities. Now COVID-19 has laid bare the impact on the vulnerable.
Pursuit of health care equity is one step toward social justice.
It was a 16-year life expectancy gap between neighborhoods that in 2019 compelled 6 health systems to join forces with community organizations to improve the health equity and economic vitality of Chicago’s West Side. Sg2 volunteered the expertise and energy of a passionate group of our team members to help guide strategy for that effort. And a recently published report challenges systems to define their own role in addressing social determinants of health (SDOH).
The substantial goodwill hospitals have built during the pandemic helps pave a path to broader community outreach. Sg2 teams also have been reflecting on our role in antiracist work and how to tap into our collective expertise. As a start, we have committed to:
- Regularly donating time and effort to SDOH projects beyond the work we did with West Side United and to expand our thinking to structural determinants of health
- Dedicating volunteer days granted by our parent company, Vizient, to address social injustice
Partnering with you, our members, will expand that impact. Thus we want to hear from you how we can make a difference together. Let us know the best way we can support initiatives you are pursuing to improve the lives of those in your communities. Share your successes so we can amplify your efforts. Suggest additional research we can undertake to inform your work. Connect with other Sg2 members to initiate change.
A note pinned to a tree in a neighborhood park near Sg2 headquarters quotes James Baldwin: “Not everything that is faced can be changed. But nothing can be changed until it is faced.”
Momentum is building among health systems to face up to social disparities that have undermined the well-being of the most vulnerable among those we serve. Providers are working tirelessly and creatively in the face of the COVID-19 public health crisis. Lives will be saved. Now we stand with our members, our coworkers and our communities to face the sobering facts that led to the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and countless other black Americans. Their lives mattered.
John Becker, on behalf of Sg2 Leadership