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The AAMC Accelerating Health Equity, Advancing through Discovery (AHEAD) initiative seeks to identify, evaluate, and disseminate effective and replicable AAMC-member institution practices that improve community health and reduce health inequities.

Learn about AAMC medical research initiatives and publications.

Building a Systems Approach to Community Health and Health Equity

Year 1 Reports

Following a year of work mapping the health equity/community health related research, training programs, and initiatives at their respective institutions, eight awardee cohort and three virtual cohort teams presented findings regarding barriers, opportunities for expanded internal and external collaboration, and SMART goals to address community specific health outcomes.

Watch the awardee cohort webinar

Watch the virtual cohort webinar

February 2017 Session Recordings

On February 23rd the AAMC hosted its first live-streamed workshop of a multi-year series of meetings to map participating institutions’ community health-focused activities into coordinated systems, and subsequently evaluate impacts for patients, communities, learners and the institutions themselves.

The workshop included speakers from the VA, NIH, CMS, HRSA, and CDC among other national stakeholders.  For more information, please click to download the meeting agenda  and site mapping exercises. Click here, to view the Health Equity Systems tools and resources page which includes the Health Equity Inventory.

Program and Workshop Overview


Dr. Philip Alberti, Senior Director, Health Equity Research and Policy, describes AAMC’s health equity initiatives and provides an overview of the activities and milestones for the 3 year AHRQ sponsored Health Equity Systems workshop series. View the session.

Grantee Presentations

Grantee Presentation

The grantee institutions provided an overview of their community, institution, vision, and reflections concerning the Health Equity Inventory tool. View the session.

The Health Equity Systems Cohort includes the following institutions:

·         Eastern Virginia Medical School

·         Florida International University Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine

·         MedStar Health

·         University of Mississippi Medical Center

·         University of Rochester Medical Center

·         Vanderbilt University Medical Center

·         Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine

·         Western Michigan University Homer Stryker MD Medical School

Facilitator: Dr. Karey Sutton, Lead Specialist, Health Equity Research and Policy, AAMC

Systems Thinking and Community Assets

Systems Thinking

This session provided participants with tools and resources to facilitate site-mapping activities from health care systems engineering and asset-based community perspectives. View the session.


Lisa Hadden, Executive Director, Mid-Central Regional Center, Mid-AHEC, Central Michigan University

Dr. Bradley (Vince) Watts, Program Director VA Office of Academic Affiliations, Systems Engineering Advanced Fellowship

What Would an Ideal System Look Like and Accomplish?

Ideal Systems

To frame the conversation and provide inspiration, we’re invited 5 leaders with a national perspective – 1 for each of an AMC’s missions + community + public health to discuss as a group what an ideal system might look like and yield for communities and our institutions. View the session.


Al Richmond, Executive Director CCPH

Dr. Courtney Aklin, Chief of Staff, NIMHD

Dr. Cara James, Director, CMS’ Office of Minority Health

Dr. Von Nguyen, Deputy Director, Office of the Associate Director for Policy, CDC

Dr. Candice Chen, Director, Division of Medicine and Dentistry, HRSA

Facilitator: Dr. Philip Alberti, Senior Director, Health Equity Research and Policy, AAMC

This project is supported by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. Funding for the conference was made possible [in part] by grant 1R13 HS22520-01A1 from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). The views expressed in written conference materials or publications and by speakers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services; nor does mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.

Health Equity Topics


ROCChe is a forum for investigators, clinicians, and their partners to collaborate, share, learn and improve upon the design, conduct and implementation of research that aims to close or minimize disparities in health and health care.

Health Equity Systems Approach

The nation’s academic medical centers and their public health, community-based, and other partners are working to achieve health equity by improving population and community health and by making health care safer and more accessible, affordable, and equitable.

Contact Health Equity Research and Policy Staff

Philip M. Alberti, PhD
Senior Director, Health Equity Research and Policy

Karey M. Sutton, PhD
Lead Specialist, Health Equity Research and Policy