We are pleased to announce that the inaugural recipient of the Champion in Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity Award: An Award of Excellence is the Department of Family Medicine and Community Health and the Anti-Racism Task Force within the department (the DFMCH ARTF). The award was announced at the 2021 Martin Luther King, Jr. Health Equity Symposium on February 3, which was conducted as a virtual event.
In October 2020, The Vice Dean for the Office of Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity, Dr. Eve Higginbotham, along with Senior Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer Dwaine Duckett announced the inception of the Champion in Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity Award: An Award of Excellence and requested nominations for the inaugural recipient. The award is open to business units, departments, divisions, institutional groups and organizations throughout Penn Medicine.
The DFMCH ARTF was established in May 2019 by faculty and residents, and it has expanded since its inception to include individuals from across the Department including clinical providers (APP and MD/DO), clinical staff, research faculty, research staff, and administrative staff. The ARTF has established an ambitious and broad programming agenda with specific projects in each of the areas of Employee Engagement, Education, Patient Care, Service, and Research.
Over the last three years, the ARTF developed interventions to significantly increase the amount of URiM candidates that are interviewed to become residents, working toward increasing diversity which will ultimately lead to better health outcomes and patient satisfaction. They have addressed health disparities head on through the removal of the race-based anemia guidelines, advocated for universal equitable COVID testing at PPMC, and mobilized the removal process of the race-based eGFR.
The ARTF has successfully implemented two different forums for discussions on racism, equity, and inclusion: Department Town Halls and a Family Medicine resident-led workshop on structural racism. They are collaborating on numerous education initiatives impacting undergraduate medical education and graduate medical education.
The ARTF has been active in service and community engagement as well. A sub-committee of the ARTF obtained Bach Funds to run flu vaccination drives in community locations including places of worship, domestic violence shelters and a mobile clinic for opioid use disorder. And in terms of civic engagement, the ARTF members executed voter registration efforts at the Penn Family Care clinic during this past election cycle.
All of the nominations received this year were strong, and we are excited to see this important work being carried out across Penn Medicine.