Diversity councils

Main Line Health System workgroups—including Education, Talent Management, Vendor Relations, Disparities in Care and Community—were created to focus on specific elements of the Diversity, Respect, Equity and Inclusion (DREI) work.

DREI councils at Main Line Health exist at DREI Councils at Main Line Health:

  • Lankenau Medical Center and Lankenau Institute for Medical Research
  • Bryn Mawr Hospital  
  • Paoli Hospital  
  • Riddle Hospital 
  • Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital 
  • Main Line Health HomeCare & Hospice
  • Main Line Health Care
  • Main Line Services (Radnor)
  • Main Line Services (Information Technology Dept.)

They were also created to determine the best system approach to deploy leading practices, focus on process improvement and address issues or concerns related to each group.

Our workgroups include:

  • Education Workgroup. This group was tasked with developing a plan to educate 11,000 employees in DREI.
  • Talent Management Workgroup. This group was charged with presenting candidates of diverse backgrounds for every leadership opportunity in the organization during the recruitment process. Hiring managers are required to honor diversity in interviewing for every position at the director level and above before making a final selection. The team focused on improving minority representation across all jobs.
  • Community Workgroup. This group was charged with analyzing the results of the Main Line Health Community Health Needs Assessment (a survey informing population health and social services planning conducted every three years) and planning events/topics based on the results of the assessment. Main Line Health entities became responsible for sharing monthly diversity messages with staff and including diversity as a standing agenda item for monthly leadership assemblies.
  • Disparities in Care Workgroup. This group's mission was to obtain accurate data on patients to analyze disparities in care in the organization. Main Line Health referenced best practices on how to collect patient's self-identified race, ethnicity and language (REAL) information. This information was a critical first step in beginning to stratify data and identifying disparities in care. One key best practice was to train all Main Line Health registrars to ask questions about REAL rather than relying on assumptions. Once all of the registrars were trained, Main Line Health implemented the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Aligning Forces for Quality national campaign, We Ask Because We Care.
  • Vendor Relations Workgroup. This group was charged with increasing the number of underrepresented minority vendors. This required Main Line Health leaders to set expectations for increased engagement with minority vendors.

Implementing what we've learned

The program leader obtained a one-year certification in Diversity Management in Healthcare. A consultant was hired to work with Main Line Health to host employee focus groups to learn about the experiences of our staff and further understand the work environment.

Special focus groups were assembled based on characteristics of staff including race/ethnicity, age, gender, sexual orientation and position/level within the organization.

The feedback from these groups identified unconscious biases and became the basis of diversity-related topics covered in a mandatory DREI education program that was facilitated as a two-day learning experience for all leaders and a one-day program for all other employees.