Creating Health Equity One Step at a Time

A longstanding health crisis has risen to the surface over the last year, exposing a mistrust of the healthcare system across the country. The impact of that mistrust is that many Black men and women have not received necessary medical attention and have avoided preventative care altogether.

Health organizations, like Bristol Myers Squibb, believe that access to quality health care shouldn’t depend on the color of someone’s skin. They are rising up and joining with others to meet the challenge of assuring equity in health care.

“Our company has been on a journey to address health disparities for a number of years – an integral part of our mission to serve patients with serious diseases,” said Giovanni Caforio, M.D., chairman and chief executive officer, Bristol Myers Squibb. “Now more than ever, we recognize the urgent need to do more to address serious gaps in care among the underserved in communities around the world. This commitment reflects our belief that investments toward achieving health equity, and increasing diversity and inclusion are opportunities to advance our vision of transforming patients’ lives through science.”

A Commitment to Change

Dedicated to making a difference, Bristol Myers Squibb and the Bristol Myers Squibb Foundation each committed $150 million to advance diversity & inclusion and health equity in 5 areas.  “BMS has invested in addressing health disparities, increasing their U.S. Employee Giving Program, increasing clinical trial diversity, supporting  more diverse suppliers and doubling Black and African American and Hispanic and Latino executive representation to ensure its workforce reflects the demographics of the patients it      serves     ,” explains Shamika Williams, People and Business Resource Group (PBRG) leader of the BMS Black Organization for Leadership Development.

Advancing Health Equity
“We understand that the need has never been more urgent, and we have made it a priority to focus our capabilities and resources to eliminate the barriers to accessing high-quality care that exist for underserved and vulnerable populations,” said Adam Lenkowsky, Senior Vice President, General Manager of U.S. Commercial at Bristol Myers Squibb. And so, earlier this year the company donated $11 million to 56 nonprofit organizations focused on advancing health equity in the United States.” The grant recipients include patient advocacy and community-based organizations, health equity coalitions, medical societies, nonprofit healthcare institutions and others to support diverse populations including Black/African Americans, Hispanic/Latino  Americans, Asians, American Indian/Alaska Natives, Women, LGBTQ+, people with disabilities and more. These organizations will deliver programs to increase disease awareness and education in racially and ethnically diverse communities, improve access to high quality care and improve diversity in clinical trials. Grantees like the DC Black Church Initiative, CrowdCare Foundation and Henry J. Austin Community Health Center in Trenton, NJ have both strong ties to Black communities and are trusted bearers of health information and services.

Dedicated to making a difference, Bristol Myers Squibb and the Bristol Myers Squibb Foundation each committed $150 million to advance diversity & inclusion and health equity in 5 areas. “BMS has invested in addressing health disparities, increasing their U.S. Employee Giving Program, increasing clinical trial diversity, supporting  more diverse suppliers and doubling  Black and African American and Hispanic and Latino executive representation to ensure its workforce reflects the demographics of the patients it serves,” explains Shamika Williams, People and Business Resource Group (PBRG) leader of the BMS Black Organization for Leadership Development.

Advancing Health Equity
“We understand that the need has never been more urgent, and we have made it a priority to focus our capabilities and resources to eliminate the barriers to accessing high-quality care that exist for underserved and vulnerable populations,” said Adam Lenkowsky, Senior Vice President, General Manager of U.S. Commercial at Bristol Myers Squibb. And so, earlier this year the company donated $11 million to 56 nonprofit organizations focused on advancing health equity in the United States.” The grant recipients include patient advocacy and community-based organizations, health equity coalitions, medical societies, nonprofit healthcare institutions and others to support diverse populations including Black/African Americans, Hispanic/Latino  Americans, Asians, American Indian/Alaska Natives, Women, LGBTQ+, people with disabilities and more. These organizations will deliver programs to increase disease awareness and education in racially and ethnically diverse communities, improve access to high quality care and improve diversity in clinical trials. Grantees like the DC Black Church Initiative, CrowdCare Foundation and Henry J. Austin Community Health Center in Trenton, NJ have both strong ties to Black communities and are trusted bearers of health information and services.

As you can see from these photos, our staff is coming together to make a difference. It is only by linking arms and working as one, from patients to providers to suppliers, that we can create the systematic change we need to make strides toward heath equity for all.

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