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Tequila Terry Selected for National Leadership Program to Eliminate Disparities in Health Care

BOSTON – May 11, 2016 – Tequila Terry, vice president of policy implementation at DentaQuest, has been selected to participate in a year-long executive leadership program designed to tackle racial and ethnic disparities in health care. Terry is one of only 38 individuals from 18 health care organizations from around the United States to be selected for the Disparities Leadership Program (DLP) 2016-2017. Terry and DentaQuest will join a cohort of 142 other organizations – DentaQuest being the only one dedicated solely to oral health care – that have participated in the DLP from 2007-2016.

The DLP is the first program of its kind in the nation, and is designed for leaders from hospitals, health insurance plans and other health care organizations seeking to develop practical strategies to eliminate racial and ethnic disparities in health care. The program is led by the Disparities Solutions Center (DSC) at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) in Boston.  
Through this program, the DSC aims to create leaders prepared to meet the challenges of health care transformation by improving quality for at-risk populations that experience disparities. The program has three main goals:

  • To arm health care leaders with a rich understanding of the causes of disparities and the vision to implement solutions and transform their organizations to deliver high-value health care.
  • To help leaders create strategic plans or projects to advance their work in reducing disparities in a customized way, with practical benefits tailored to every organization.
  • To align the goals of health equity with health care reform and value-based purchasing.

“We are thrilled that Tequila Terry has been selected for the Disparities Leadership Program, as its vision so closely aligns with DentaQuest’s mission to improve the oral health of all,” said Steve Pollock, president and CEO of DentaQuest. “This honor recognizes her ongoing work to address disparities through her key role at our organization. In the program, Tequila will have the opportunity to continue to elevate the importance of oral health and its connection to overall health, while working collaboratively with leaders throughout health care to drive health equity across diverse groups.”
“This program is about developing new leaders and taking action. It is about helping individuals and their health care organizations understand the critical connection between improving quality and eliminating disparities in care through a concerted, coordinated effort to change our health care system,” said Joseph R. Betancourt, M.D., M.P.H., director of the Disparities Solutions Center at MGH, and a member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) Committee, which produced the 2002 landmark report Unequal Treatment: Confronting Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Health Care. This report revealed striking disparities in the quality of health care services delivered to minority and white patients – even for patients of the same socioeconomic background and access to care. “These health care organizations are clearly distinguishing themselves as national leaders by taking action to identify and address disparities,” Dr. Betancourt said.
To learn more, visit: https://mghdisparitiessolutions.org/the-disparities-leadership-program/.
About DentaQuest
Based in Boston, Mass., DentaQuest (www.dentaquest.com) is the second largest oral health company in the United States and the largest in the Medicaid space. Along with its charitable DentaQuest Foundation, its clinical DentaQuest Care Group and its educational DentaQuest Institute, its mission is to improve the oral health of all. Follow DentaQuest on Twitter @dentaquest, Facebook at www.facebook.com/DentaQuest and LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/dentaquest, and subscribe to our blog, Oral Health Matters at http://oralhealthmatters.blogspot.com/.
About the Disparities Solution Center at Massachusetts General Hospital
Created in July 2005 as the nation’s first, hospital-based disparities center, the DSC at MGH has significant experience in addressing racial and ethnic disparities in care. The Center has worked with several leading health plans across the country to develop strategies to identify and eliminate disparities. In addition, DSC faculty have staffed the Massachusetts General Hospital Committee on Racial and Ethnic Disparities, pioneering activities such as the Disparities Dashboard, an innovative way to identify and monitor disparities, as well as the development of a culturally competent diabetes disease management program. The DSC faculty have also played an important role in the well-recognized effort among Boston hospitals to eliminate disparities under the leadership of the Boston Public Health Commission. These experiences have uniquely positioned DSC faculty to provide training to those interested in addressing disparities through quality improvement.
The DLP is jointly sponsored by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA), and supported by Joint Commission Resources (JCR), an affiliate of the Joint Commission.