Hackensack Meridian Health recently announced that Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune is one of the first hospitals in the nation to earn a Health Care Equity Certification from the Joint Commission. The certification indicates Hackensack Meridian Health’s extensive efforts to address and improve health care equity across its network.
“Our team members at Hackensack Meridian Health are dedicated to providing safe, equitable care to all of our communities. Achieving health equity is one of our network’s top priorities,” Robert Garrett, CEO, Hackensack Meridian Health, said. “We are honored to have Jersey Shore University Medical Center be recognized as one of the first sites in the nation to complete this important certification from the Joint Commission, and we look forward to continuing to advance health equity for our patients.”
To become certified, the Joint Commission requires health systems to have formalized structures in place to improve health equity across their facilities and serve as community collaborators to address areas of need.
Organizations seeking this designation must collect, analyze and act on data points relating to patient care, patient communication, socioeconomic information, staff education and policies on various topics, including recruitment and retention.
“The Joint Commission’s Health Care Equity Certification is a testament to our team members’ dedicated commitment each and every day to providing outstanding, compassionate care to all of our patients,” Dr. Kenneth Sable, regional president, Hackensack Meridian Health’s Southern Market, said. We look forward to building upon this recognition to continue enhancing patient care for all.”
“New Jersey is one of the nation’s most diverse states, and this certification validates our longstanding efforts to eliminate health disparities and elevate the standard of care,” Vito Buccellato, chief hospital executive at Jersey Shore University Medical Center, said.
Jersey Shore University Medical Center underwent a rigorous onsite review to receive the certification. During the visit, a team of Joint Commission surveyors evaluated over 40 program-specific standards and a range of data points, including the following:
- Three quality and/or safety measures for priority clinical conditions by sociodemographic characteristics (e.g., cardiovascular outcomes, cesarean birth rates for nulliparous women with term, singleton baby in vertex position, hospital-acquired conditions, pressure injury rates, etc.);
- Comparison of the race, ethnicity and languages spoken by staff and leaders to the race, ethnicity and languages spoken by the community;
- Employee opinion survey/culture of safety survey results stratified by race, ethnicity and language information; and
- Health Care Equity performance improvement plan.
Hackensack Meridian Health invited members of its senior leadership team, administrative teams, and clinical care leaders to participate in the certification review.
The Joint Commission is an independent, not-for-profit organization that accredits more than 22,000 health care organizations and health care programs in the U.S.