From Philadelphia Magazine: Erica Dixon, director of Accelerate Health Equity and project director at Penn Medicine, says that in the summer of 2020, healthcare systems and health-focused organizations across the region came together in conversations about the COVID-19 pandemic, the murder of George Floyd, the Black Lives Matter demonstrations, and the impact all were having on Philadelphians. “The idea of collaborating, breaking down silos, working together — that was a concurrent evolution between many forces, including 13 Southeastern PA health systems declaring that racism is a public health crisis, plus the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association’s pledge to make meaningful change and their National Health Equity Strategy,” she says. From there, Accelerate Health Equity began to take shape, with stakeholders forming a steering committee in early 2021 and finalizing the initiative a year later. Dixon says the overarching goal of the initiative is to advance the health of area residents and break down the forces driving disparities predominantly impacting Black and brown Philadelphians. “Our aims are to improve health equity, address racism in health care and social determinants of health, and have a sustainable impact in Philly — and doing that by working together across all these organizations through successful, scalable pilot programs.” In doing so, initiative collaborators agree there’s an opportunity to greatly improve Philly’s health and healthcare landscape — and have a lasting impact. Read more in Phillymag.