The Disparities Solutions Center (DSC) is dedicated to the development and implementation of strategies that advance policy and practice to eliminate racial and ethnic disparities in health care.
Specifically, we are working to:
The Disparities Solutions Center (DSC) at Massachusetts General Hospital is dedicated to helping health care leaders address disparities and achieve equity in a time of healthcare transformation.
The Healthcare Quality and Equity Action Forum will arm you with the knowledge, tools and strategies you will need to take action and be prepared to address disparities and deliver high-value, quality care to all.
Since 2005, the DSC has worked to improve health care quality for every patient, regardless of race, ethnicity, culture, class, or language proficiency. Our work is focused developing actionable strategies to improve quality and achieve equity that are designed for those on the front lines of health care. We provide tools to identify disparities, develop models to address them, and then work closely with health care leaders to deploy them in their unique care settings. From our home at the Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, we draw on our rich legacy of conducting cutting-edge research and translating it into practical, actionable strategies that are built to be implanted in real care settings. Our multidisciplinary group – with expertise in health policy, disparities, quality improvement, clinical care and organizational transformation – is committed to working closely with health care stakeholders to help achieve equity in this time of healthcare transformation.
Joseph R. Betancourt, MD, MPH, directs the Disparities Solutions Center, which works with healthcare organizations to improve quality of care, address racial and ethnic disparities, and achieve equity. He is Director of Multicultural Education for Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), and an expert in cross-cultural care and communication. Dr. Betancourt is also a co-founder of Quality Interactions, Inc., an industry-leading company that has created and deployed a portfolio of e-learning programs in the area of cross-cultural care and communication to over 125,000 health care professionals across the country. Dr. Betancourt served on several Institute of Medicine committees, including those that produced Unequal Treatment: Confronting Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Health Care and Guidance for a National Health Care Disparities Report. He also actively serves as an advisor to the government, healthcare systems, as well as the public and private sector on strategies to improve quality of care and eliminate disparities. He is a practicing internist, co-chairs the MGH Committee on Racial and Ethnic Disparities, and sits on the Boston Board of Health. Dr. Betancourt is on the Boards of Trinity CHE, a large, national healthcare system, as well as Neighborhood Health Plan, based in Boston. He practices Internal Medicine at the MGH Internal Medicine Associates.
Alexander R. Green, MD, MPH, is the Associate Director of the Disparities Solutions Center and Senior Scientist at the Mongan Institute for Health Policy at Massachusetts General Hospital. He is also an Associate Professor and Chair of the Cross-Cultural Care Committee at Harvard Medical School. His work focuses on programs designed to eliminate racial and ethnic disparities in care, including the use of culturally competent quality improvement interventions, leadership development, and dissemination strategies. He has studied the role of unconscious biases and their impact on clinical decision-making, language barriers and patient satisfaction, and innovative approaches to cross-cultural medical education. He has also served on several national panels on disparities and cultural competency including the Joint Commission's "Hospitals, Language, and Culture" project. In July of 2013, he was awarded The Arnold P. Gold Foundation Professorship for humanism in medicine.
Aswita Tan-McGrory, MBA, MSPH, is the Deputy Director of the Disparities Solutions Center. She is a key member of the senior management team and supervises the broad portfolio of projects and administration of the Center. These include a collaboration with Center of Quality and Safety at MGH to develop the Annual Report on Equity in Healthcare Quality to analyze key quality measures stratified by race, ethnicity, and language; the Boston Public Health Commission on developing and implementing a city-wide disparities dashboard; and the Pediatric Health Equity Collaborative to develop recommendations on collecting race, ethnicity and language from pediatric patients. Ms. Tan-McGrory also oversees the Disparities Leadership Program, an executive-level leadership program on how to address disparities. In addition, she works closely with the Director to chart the DSC’s future growth and strategic response to an ever-increasing demand for the Center's services. Her interests are in providing equitable care to underserved populations and she has over 19 years of professional experience in the areas of disparities, maternal/child health, elder homelessness, and HIV testing and counseling. She received her Master of Business Administration from Babson College and her Master of Science in Public Health, with a concentration in tropical medicine and parasitology, from Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. Ms. Tan-McGrory is a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer where she spent 2 years in rural Nigeria, West Africa, on water sanitation and Guinea Worm Eradication projects.
Roderick R. King, MD, MPH, is currently faculty in the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School Senior Faculty at the Massachusetts General Hospital Disparities Solutions and a Fulbright Regional Network for Applied Research (NEXUS) Scholar. His academic work/teaching and key consulting roles focus on improving the health of underserved communities via leadership and organizational development, and human capital development. In particular, Dr. King has worked to improve the health of communities nationally and internationally via training and facilitating collaborative leadership efforts to support leaders in creating aligned actions and measurable results for underserved communities. Prior to his current work, Dr. King was the New England Regional Director for the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, a Commander in the U.S. Public Health Service and former Senior Advisor to the Bureau of Primary Health Care, HRSA.
Lenny Lopez, MD, MDiv, MPH, is Senior Faculty at the Disparities Solutions Center. Dr. Lopez is an internist trained at the Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH), is an Assistant Professor at Harvard Medical School, and is an Assistant at the Mongan Institute for Health Policy at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH). Dr. Lopez completed the Commonwealth Fund Fellowship in Minority Health Policy at the Harvard School of Public Health and received his MPH in 2005. He joined the Institute for Health Policy in 2008 after his two year fellowship in epidemiology and statistics at the Harvard School of Public Health. His research interests extend across a range of issues relating to racial and ethnic disparities including language barriers and patient safety, quality measurement and improvement in hospital care and the impact of health information technology on disparity reduction. He has several publications from his fellowship research on these topics, as well as publications relating to his interests in the ethics of health care delivery and graduate medical education. Dr. Lopez received his medical degree from University of Pennsylvania in 2001, completed his residency Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, in 2004, and received a Master of Divinity from the Harvard Divinity School in 1999.
Alden M. Landry, MD, MPH, is Senior Faculty at the Disparities Solutions Center at Massachusetts General Hospital, and an emergency medicine physician at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. He also holds other academic positions including Associate Director of the Office of Multicultural Affairs at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Faculty Assistant Director of the Office of Diversity Inclusion and Community Partnership at Harvard Medical School. He received his BS from Prairie View A&M University in 2002, MD from the University of Alabama in 2006 and completed his residency in Emergency Medicine at the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in 2009. In 2010, he earned an MPH from the Harvard School of Public Health. He completed the Commonwealth Fund/Harvard University Fellowship in Minority Health Policy in 2010 as well. He was also awarded the Disparities Solutions Center/Aetna Fellow in Health Disparities award in 2010-2011. In addition to his clinical interests, Dr. Landry is involved in research on emergency department utilization trends, disparities in care and quality of care. He co-instructs two courses at Harvard School of Public Health and teaches cultural competency to residents. He works with numerous organizations to eliminate health disparities and increase diversity in the health care workforce. Dr Landry mentors students from high school to medical school encouraging careers in the health professions.
Karey Kenst, MPH, is the Project Manager at the Disparities Solutions Center. She joined the DSC with ten years of professional experience in the areas of international humanitarian response and development, LGBT health, and sexual violence prevention and response. She is dedicated to implementing policy and practice improvements to advance health equity and enjoys working collaboratively across disciplines and departments to further this work. Her areas of expertise include project management, qualitative research, and capacity building. She earned her Master of Public Health with a concentration in Social and Behavioral Sciences from the Boston University School of Public Health and holds a Bachelor of Arts in sociology from the University of Wisconsin.
Sarah Beiter is the Staff Assistant at the Disparities Solutions Center and the Mongan Institute for Health Policy. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and English from Suffolk University. Prior to this, she interned with the Schwartz Center for Compassionate Healthcare, which works to increase the patient-caregiver relationship. She also conducted research on the portrayal of female offenders in crime television shows and presented at the American Society of Criminology’s Annual meeting in Washington, DC in 2011. During her undergrad, she tutored international students at the Writing Center, advocated for LGBT rights in Detroit for Alternative Spring Break, and designed a collaborative art project for V-Day, a national project which works to end gender violence.
Andrea Madu is a Research Assistant for the Disparities Solutions Center. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality from Harvard University. Prior to working with the DSC, she interned at the Harvard Center for AIDS Research, developing a national survey to uncover the behaviors, stigmas, beliefs, and education surrounding HIV/AIDS within the black community. In 2011, Miss Madu also volunteered with Health Leads at Boston Medical Hospital, providing food, employment, education, and housing resources for low-income mothers in the nursery. As an undergrad, Miss Madu also both authored and edited personalized stories for children in orphanages around the world and taught lessons about the Civil Rights Movement in New York Charter Schools.
Adriana Lopera is a Research Assistant at the Disparities Solutions Center. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Latin American and Caribbean Studies from Columbia University. While at Columbia, she was a member of the Intercultural Resource Community and co-coordinated educational field trips for neighborhood children as part of a student led volunteer group. She also interned at MADRE, an international women’s rights organization. Prior to working at the DSC, Ms. Lopera served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Costa Rica. As part of the Rural Community Development program, she worked with community organizations to increase their organizational capacity and project design skills. She also facilitated young women’s empowerment workshops on health and life skills and a local women’s group greenhouse project.
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