UI Health Care chosen for AMA network: Quality and safety impact on social justice and equity

UI Health Care has been selected as one of eight health systems nationwide to participate in an American Medical Association (AMA) learning network designed to help hospital systems apply an equity lens to all aspects of quality and safety practices.

The Advancing Equity through Quality and Safety Peer Network is a year-long mentorship and networking program—offered by the AMA, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and the Joint Commission—that aims to equip health care systems with the knowledge and tools to advance racial justice and equity for their patients, staff, and communities with the goal of improving health outcomes for historically marginalized populations.

Through individual consultations and group learning opportunities with the network’s panel of subject matter experts, participating health systems will learn strategies for systematically identifying and addressing root causes of inequities via an integrated approach to quality, safety, equity, and operations.

As an early adopter institution, UI Health care is uniquely positioned to improve patient care, quality and safety, and our national reputation among physicians on health equity, which may be valuable for future workforce recruitment.

“This pilot will help us continue to learn more to address health parity for our community,” says Denise Martinez, MD, interim associate vice president for the Office of Health Parity. “I’m proud of the team participating and taking this important step.”

UI Health Care employees leading this initiative include:

  • James Murphy, MD, chief quality officer
  • Derek Zhorne, MD, clinical associate professor
  • Alex Nance, MHA, director of the Office of the Patient Experience
  • Tope Awelewa, MBChB, MPH, chief quality officer for Ambulatory Care
  • Nick Butler, MD, MBA, director of Population Health
  • Denise Martinez, MD, interim associate vice president for the Office of Health Parity
  • Kara Schwee, JD, MS, project manager
  • Nicole Del Castillo, MD, MPH, director of the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.


  1. How can I be involved? Barbara Stanerson PT MHS
    VP SEIU Healthcare MN&IA, Iowa sector

    • Barbara,
      Thanks for your interest. At this phase, we are still establishing the program within the team listed above. We will share opportunities to get involved as they become available.

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