Why maintaining an equity-centered approach is critical to our mission

Since our creation, Healthcare Ready has been committed to building resilient communities throughout the nation; ones that can withstand and recover from the negative impacts of disasters and disease outbreaks. Today these hazardous events are on the rise, which is why it’s critical that we take steps to protect and enhance the health and well-being of all before the next crisis strikes. It’s why Healthcare Ready exists.

As a nonprofit, our approach includes working with partners in the public and private sectors to prepare residents, strengthen infrastructure systems, and ensure emergency response initiatives are in place. When these resources are insufficient or non-existent, entire communities and the very people who depend on them for survival will suffer. In 2005, the world watched as Hurricane Katrina devastated communities, caused disproportionate harm, and revealed deep structural and systemic inequities throughout the region that still exist.

Examples like this are why we maintain an equity-centered approach in all our activities – our mission depends upon it. This includes our partnerships with the healthcare and emergency management sectors. We help them take an equity lens to their roles in mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery to protect public health. We also draw attention to opportunities for them to create equitable outcomes at every step in that cycle.

Healthcare Ready constantly explores ways we can work together to ensure that at a minimum, the work to support communities navigating a crisis are not made more inequitable. At a maximum, we dismantle existing inequities and work towards a more equitable community and society in the process. Our goal is to eradicate the systemic barriers that prevent communities of color, low-income, medically fragile, and other historically underserved groups from becoming more resilient in the face of impending disasters. Their futures depend upon it.

View our Equity Framework

“Racial equity means that everyone has a fair and just opportunity to be as healthy as possible. This requires removing obstacles to health such as poverty, discrimination, and their consequences, including powerlessness and lack of access to good jobs with fair pay, quality education and housing, safe environments, and health care,”

—Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s definition of health equity