Health & Wellness

MercyOne Joins Other Catholic Health Care Systems in Confronting Racism

MercyOne announced that it is joining with the Catholic Health Association of the United States (CHA) in a new initiative to confront racism by achieving health equity.

MercyOne joins 22 of the nation’s largest Catholic health care systems committed to confronting systemic racism by prioritizing equity in response to COVID-19; enacting change across their own health care systems by examining and changing hiring, promotion and retention practices to ensure diversity and inclusion; forming stronger partnerships with communities of color to improve health outcomes; and leveraging their united and powerful voice to advocate for policy changes that address the root causes of racism and social injustice.

Collectively, MercyOne and the other Catholic health organizations who have signed the Catholic Health Association of the United States’ (CHA) Confronting Racism by Achieving Health Equity pledge employ nearly a half million people across 46 states and the District of Columbia and care for almost four million patients annually.

Recognizing that racism is an affront to the core values of Catholic social teaching, CHA members joined in solidarity to promote the common good and seek justice by being actively anti-racist and accountable in effecting positive change in the communities we serve.

Four Focus Areas

Act for COVID-19 equity: Members commit to ensuring that testing for COVID-19 is available and accessible in minority communities and that new treatments are distributed and used equitably as they become available. Members will also work for prioritization of vaccinations for those individuals and families at higher risk — elder populations and communities of color, including Native American communities.

Enact change across our own health systems: Members are examining how their organizations recruit, hire, promote, and retain employees; how they conduct business operations, including visible diversity and inclusivity at the decision, leadership and governance levels; and how they incentivize and hold our leaders accountable.

Advocate for improved health outcomes for minority communities and populations: Members agree to promote and improve the delivery of culturally competent care and oppose policies that exacerbate or perpetuate economic and social inequities, including such issues as education, housing, and criminal justice reform.

Strengthen trust with minority communities: Members will continue to foster, strengthen, and sustain authentic relationships based on mutually agreed goals to better understand the unique needs of their communities.

Catholic health care leaders who have signed the pledge recognize that collectively they are in a unique position to bring about overdue change to policies and practices that have allowed systemic racism and health disparities to continue in the United States.

To hold itself and its members accountable, CHA intends to provide updates on the commitment progress annually.

To learn more about this initiative visit

Two years ago, MercyOne announced its new brand and unified approach as a key step in connecting its many points of care across the state of Iowa and surrounding locations. The consolidated health system is designed to make it easier and more convenient for everyone to identify care locations, as well as enhance statewide coordination of medical expertise and services and to ensure consistent patient care experiences across all MercyOne locations.

MercyOne, one of the largest health care systems in the state with more than 20,000 colleagues, including doctors and providers, celebrated its second birthday on February 1. This date marks the uniting of 420 care locations across Iowa and neighboring communities to come together to advance the health and well-being of all patients.

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