HCTTF and Community Catalyst Blog Emphasizes the Need for Community Partnerships to Address Inequities in light of COVID-19

WASHINGTON (January 27, 2021) – The Health Care Transformation Task Force (HCTTF or Task Force), a group of leading health care payers, providers, purchasers, and patient organizations, along with Community Catalyst, a national non-profit advocacy organization working to build the consumer and community leadership required to transform the American health system, today released a blog highlighting the importance of engaging community partnerships to effectively address racial inequities revealed by COVID-19.

The blog, Addressing Racial Inequities Laid Bare by COVID-19 Requires a Renewed Commitment to Community Partnership, emphasizes the urgency for renewing consumer and community engagement to address racial inequities during the pandemic. This blog outlines resources to aid health care organizations in implementing and sustaining consumer engagement efforts, including two resources developed by Community Catalyst and the Health Care Transformation Task Force, with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The resources include a set of case studies and a change package to help forward-thinking organizations with this important undertaking. The blog was co-authored by Renée Markus Hodin, Deputy Director of the Center for Consumer Engagement in Health Innovation at Community Catalyst, Joshua Traylor, Director at the Task Force, and three advisory group members who aided in the development of the aforementioned resources: Hala Durrah, MTA, Patient Family Engagement Consultant and Advocate, Pam Dardess, MPH, Vice President for Strategic Initiatives & Operations, Institute for Patient- and Family-Centered Care, and Tom Leyden, MBA, Director II, Value Partnerships Program at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan.

While the work of developing these resources largely occurred prior to the COVID-19 pandemic and the renewed attention on racial inequities, the engagement strategies highlighted remain highly relevant to the current moment. This effort also identified best practices for promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion, providing health care organizations tools to more effectively respond to both COVID-19 specific challenges and the more ubiquitous impacts of systemic racism and inequality.

“The pandemic is providing a stark reminder of the disparities many patients face and the impacts on health care outcomes,” said Joshua Traylor, Director at the Health Care Transformation Task Force. “Now more than ever, it is critical that health care organizations use engagement strategies to incorporate the needs and perspectives of consumers into organization level decision-making.”

“COVID-19 has exacerbated the existing racial inequities in America, and has disproportionately impacted people of color and low-income communities,” said Renée Markus Hodin, Deputy Director of the Center for Consumer Engagement in Health Innovation at Community Catalyst. “This reality further amplifies the need for health care systems to engage with their community partners and establish new relationships.”


The Center for Consumer Engagement in Health Innovation (CCEHI) at Community Catalyst is a hub devoted to teaching, learning and sharing knowledge to bring the consumer experience to the forefront of health innovation in order to deliver better care, better value and better health for every community, particularly vulnerable and historically underserved populations. The Center engages in investments in state and local advocacy, leadership development, research and evaluation, and consultative services to delivery systems and health plans. For more information, visit www.healthinnovation.org.


The Health Care Transformation Task Force is a unique collaboration of patients, payers, providers and purchasers working to lead a sweeping transformation of the health care system. By transitioning to value-based models that support the Triple Aim of better health, better care and lower costs, the Task Force is committed to accelerating the transformation to value in health care. To learn more, visit WWW.HCTTF.ORG.


Media Contact:

Megan Zook


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