Driving Health Equity in the Workforce
Strategies, guiding principles, best practices and other resources organizations can use to build toward health equity.
Good Business and Good Health Go Hand in Hand.
Employers have a key role to play in addressing health disparities nationwide and achieving a state of health equity, in which everyone has a fair and just opportunity to live a healthy life. Research shows that by addressing drivers of health inequities in the workplace, employers can increase the health and productivity of their workforce and reduce health care spending. Health inequities account for roughly $320 billion in annual U.S. health care spending and counting, according to recent analysis from Deloitte. Building a workplace where all employees can thrive is no longer an option—it’s a moral and business imperative.
The American Heart Association’s Health Equity in the Workforce initiative, in collaboration with Deloitte Health Equity Institute and the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) Foundation, will leverage the expertise of business leaders to build a comprehensive roadmap and set of resources to help advance health equity in the workforce. Powered by the Association’s Well-being Works Better™ platform, which helps business leaders promote health and well-being for all, the initiative aims to enable positive health outcomes for 10 million U.S. workers by 2025.
Preventable health disparities have plagued generations of Americans, with under-resourced and systematically marginalized populations among those impacted most. For example, Black people in the U.S. are at nearly twice the risk of experiencing a first stroke and rural life expectancy is approximately three years lower when compared to urban life expectancy. Up to 80% of health outcomes are driven by social, economic and environmental factors, many of which employers can impact by offering comprehensive health and well-being benefits, safe workspaces, employee education and other programs.
The American Heart Association’s Health Equity Goal
Every person deserves the opportunity for a full, healthy life. As champions for health equity, by 2024, the American Heart Association will advance cardiovascular health for all, including identifying and removing barriers to health care access and quality. The Health Equity in the Workforce initiative is helping power the American Heart Association’s goal of promoting equitable health for all.
US Health Care Can’t Afford Health Inequities
Inequities in the US health system cost approximately $320 billion today and could eclipse $1 trillion in annual spending by 2040 if left unaddressed.
CEO Roundtable Driving Health Equity in the Workplace
The American Heart Association's CEO Roundtable is a leadership collaborative of nearly 50 CEOs dedicated to employee health and well-being. These executives are focused on eliminating workplace inequities that harm the health and well-being of employees, businesses and communities. The Roundtable’s report, developed by business leaders and health experts, laid the foundation for this new initiative by providing actionable strategies and principles employers can use to build toward health equity.