Providence shares one-year progress report on health equity

 Having pledged $50 million over five years to reduce disparities in health care, the health system reports positive strides over the past year, including a more equitable COVID-19 response.

RENTON, Wash., August 18, 2021 – Providence, one of the largest health systems in the nation, today released a progress report demonstrating positive strides on its commitment to health equity. A year ago, with social unrest erupting across the nation and disparities in COVID-19 on full display, Providence responded by committing $50 million to health equity over five years. The health system also formally integrated this work as a top priority in its strategic plan.

“The signs of the times called us to action. Though we still have a long way to go, it’s incredible to see how much we’ve accomplished and how many lives we’ve touched in a short amount of time,” said Rod Hochman, M.D., president and CEO of Providence.

Over the past year, Providence’s health equity work has focused on underserved, marginalized and/or oppressed communities most impacted by the pandemic. Providence has prioritized equitable vaccine deployment, data-informed approaches, program evaluation and sustainability, inclusive language in every patient and caregiver interaction and in the electronic medical record, and provider education. Providence has also advanced non-COVID focused programs and initiatives supported by learning collaboratives to accelerate change.

Over the past year, with these strategic priorities, Providence was able to:

  • Serve 457,060 individuals
  • Partner with 502 community organizations
  • Host 417 testing and vaccine events for underserved communities
  • Provide 31,561 COVID tests, 47,129 COVID vaccines and 4,789 flu vaccines for underserved communities
  • Provide 158,110 COVID kits to individuals in need
  • Connect 76,826 people from underserved communities to care

“As I reflect on the past year, I am grateful to the caregivers of Providence for stepping up to answer the call to achieve health equity. This is sacred work, and our caregivers have shown up as advocates, leaders and trusted partners. Together with our community partners, we have helped mitigate disparities in COVID-19, as well as hypertension, diabetes, cancer and mental health. Thank you to all our caregivers and partners for ensuring that action follows promising words,” said Rhonda Medows, M.D., president of population health management for Providence.

In addition to its one-year progress report, Providence released a health equity statement, developed by caregivers from across the Providence family of organizations. The statement articulates a world where every person has the chance to live their healthiest life. It also outlines five commitments that we pledge to deliver to every patient and every community we serve.  


About Providence

Providence is a national, not-for-profit Catholic health system comprising a diverse family of organizations and driven by a belief that health is a human right. With 52 hospitals, over 1,000 physician clinics, senior services, supportive housing, and many other health and educational services, the health system and its partners employ more than 120,000 caregivers serving communities across seven states – Alaska, California, Montana, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas, and Washington, with system offices in Renton, Wash., and Irvine, Calif. Learn about our vision of health for a better world at

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