The ABIM Foundation’s 2020 Forum sought to increase awareness of the relationship between trust and health equity and catalyze work to address inequity and mistrust. During the annual meeting, participants formed more than 20 small groups to discuss how to advance this work, and seven continued to meet over the past year to discuss a variety of trust building ideas and ways to implement them.
The ABIM Foundation has awarded a total of $70,000 to three members of these groups so they can launch meaningful projects informed by discussions that began at the 2020 Forum:
- AFFIRM: The American Foundation for Firearm Injury Reduction in Medicine (AFFIRM) is the nation’s leading nonprofit dedicated to ending the American firearm injury epidemic using a public health approach. By working with trusted messengers, including medical and public health partners, other nonprofit organizations, community members, law enforcement, and firearm industry leaders, AFFIRM has developed and piloted the Reframe program, which uses a combination of narratives and evidence to increase the understanding of firearm injury as a health problem.
This grant will enable AFFIRM to create a “Reframe playbook” that will codify the Reframe program and include extensive materials that can be adapted for various concerns including firearm suicide, firearm domestic violence, firearm community violence, unintentional firearm injury, firearm targeted violence and mass shootings. The playbook will also include collated national resources and contact information for partner organizations.
- Center for Health Research Transformation (CHRT) at the University of Michigan: While public health and medical care have traditionally been siloed, the lack of connection between the two systems had serious consequences during the COVID-19 pandemic. Public health messages about the measures needed to keep people safe (e.g., masking and social distancing) were politicized, leading to distrust. And in too many communities, public health leaders had difficulty getting these messages heard and accepted. Many lives may have been saved had physicians and public health leaders worked together to share these guidelines and reinforce messages.
There are also gaps in information and service delivery in the current primary care model that the public health system can likely help fill. And now there is a new openness to create a model for integrating public health and primary care that builds on the strengths of both. As primary care practices focus more on population health, public health services could have tremendous impact on improving the health of the communities these practices serve.
This project will explore public health integration into the primary care team on the population health level and this grant will enable the CHRT project team to identify ways to measure and test the impact of this integration as well as explore its scalability and sustainability.
- The Leapfrog Group: Research has shown that patients from vulnerable populations experience harm from certain patient safety events in U.S. hospitals at a higher rate than non-vulnerable populations, subjecting these populations to both greater harm and to increased costs. Yet while many purchasers, clinicians and hospitals may ascribe disparities to cultural forces outside their immediate control, they rarely have the data available to estimate how disparities affect the specific populations they are responsible for. As a result, key stakeholders maintain support for action in a general sense but do not take actions within their own enterprises—even though such action could accelerate immediate improvement.
This grant will enable The Leapfrog Group to explore the feasibility of expanding its Lives & Dollars Lost Calculator to estimate lives lost and dollars wasted due to racial, ethnic and language-based disparities in harm from patient safety events. The goal of the calculator is to help purchasers, providers and hospitals recognize the harm to vulnerable populations and how that harm wastes resources within their own sphere of responsibility.