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About Us

Advancing Health Equity Leading Care, Payment, and Systems Transformation

Since our founding by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in 2005 under the name Finding Answers, we have pursued the goal of health equity by maintaining a focused commitment to eliminating health and healthcare disparities. In 2018 we changed our name to Advancing Health Equity, but our mission remained the same – identifying practical steps to help everyone have a fair and just opportunity to be as healthy as possible.

Between 2005 and 2014, we managed a $16 million portfolio that funded evaluations of innovative projects across the country aimed at reducing health care disparities. We also produced numerous systematic reviews of interventions to reduce disparities. We established best practices as a leader in the field and developed the Roadmap to Reduce Disparities. Finally, we provided technical assistance to health care systems pursuing the goal of health equity.

Integrating Payment and Health Care Delivery Reforms to Achieve Health Equity

Most organizations need a strong business case to justify the time and energy needed to sustainably address disparities in patient care and health outcomes. Payment reform may be a solution, but payers and health care organizations are unsure how to design payment models that support and incentivize achieving health equity. In 2014, we funded three grantees that aimed to reduce disparities through care transformation and payment reform.

Aligning Key Stakeholders to Achieve Health Equity

The activities of policy makers, payers, enrollees, communities, and healthcare delivery organizations to achieve health equity must be aligned if they are to be effective. We currently partner with three organizations: the Center for Health Care Strategies, the Institute for Medicaid Innovation and The Justice Collective. Our partnership helps us collaborate with state Medicaid agencies, Medicaid managed care health plans, and healthcare delivery organizations. It is focused on designing value-based payment and contracting models that support and incentivize healthcare delivery transformation to reduce and eliminate disparities in health and healthcare. 

The tools on this website capture the program’s main lessons learned and best practice recommendations so that health care and payer organizations can successfully reduce disparities via quality improvement and payment reform efforts.

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“The program fills a critical gap in our nation’s efforts to reduce and eliminate disparities in health and healthcare. It will bring state Medicaid agencies, health plans, and providers together to learn best practices to address health disparities tailored to the needs of the people they serve.”

Andrea Ducas, MPH, senior program officer at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

“Linking incentives to outcomes helped promote a team approach to patient care and also inspired some healthy competition between the three clinic sites. After only a year of implementation, the researchers started to see significant differences in clinical quality metrics across the three locations… Staff continue to be committed to reducing disparities and improving the health of our patients.”

Robin Mullet, acting program director at Fairfax County Health Care Network