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Action Plan 9: Position the AAMC as a National Leader in Health Equity and Health Justice

Philip Alberti, PhD, discusses the Center for Health Justice, which offers a space to work together and look beyond medical care to the other factors that create opportunities for communities to thrive.

Despite decades of effort by various sectors — including public health and medicine — health inequities and injustices persist in our nation.

This action plan created the AAMC Center for Health Justice in September 2021 to contribute to the solutions to health inequities by innovating, collaborating, and digging deeper to ensure that systems and structures shift toward justice. The center will spark community collaborations with diverse sectors and individuals contributing their unique resources in service of the common cause of health justice.

The center convenes two groups of health justice champions and collaborators who lend their voices to key efforts, including the Multisector Partner Group – comprised of individuals from sectors representing the diverse social and political determinants of health at the national and local levels – and AAMC CHARGE (Collaborative for Health Equity: Act, Research, Generate Evidence).

Where we are now

  • As part of its ongoing efforts to regularly poll nationally representative samples of adults across the United States to gather public opinions in real-time, the Center has published several polling briefs. The Center has granted access to a public opinion polling data set co-designed with AAMC CHARGE to five teams of researchers to use for health equity research on access to health care, financial equity, child health, disability justice, and understanding of health equity terms and concepts to inform policy.  
  • The Center regularly publishes health justice research briefs to explore the health equity impacts of public policy. As part of its Health Justice Research Agenda, the Center published a brief using polling data to understand the public’s perspective on reparations in America, followed by an interactive discussion based on the findings and how the data impacts the work of health justice. 
  • The AAMC and AAMC Center for Health Justice submitted a letter to the Food and Drug Administration in response to its draft guidance on collecting race and ethnicity data in clinical trials. 
  • In March 2024, the Center began a year-long project to implement and evaluate the Principles of Trustworthiness Toolkit with four communities and their multisector partners. The cohort will assess changes in collaboration, engagement, and trustworthiness among those that participate. 
  • The Center issued a call for storytelling collaborators to seek environmental justice champions to work with the Center and share their successes and challenge narratives that obstruct their local environmental justice work. The stories of five selected teams will be shared over the next year. 

What happens next

The AAMC Center for Health Justice will continue to engage the health equity community across sectors, build evidence and share expertise about policies that ensure every community has the vital conditions for health and wellbeing, and ease the path for other organizations inside and outside of health care working to partner with their communities for health. Through its research, analysis, and collaborations, the Center will continue to create space for multisector efforts to address inequities in its core focus areas of maternal health equity, data for health equity, environmental justice, and trustworthiness.

Ways to get involved

  • Join AAMC CHARGE (Collaborative for Health Equity: Act, Research, Generate Evidence) to connect with a multidisciplinary group of health equity champions and community partners via events, collaborations, and a virtual community.
  • Subscribe to the monthly Center for Health Justice newsletter.
  • Follow the Center for Health Justice on X and LinkedIn.
  • Visit the Center for Health Justice website to learn more about our work and how you or your organization can get involved.
  • Contact the Center for Health Justice.