GuideWell Mutual Holding Corporation (GuideWell), the parent to a family of forward-thinking companies focused on transforming health care; Florida Blue, the state’s leading health insurer; and Florida Blue Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Florida Blue, today announced $25 million in investments over five years to organizations focused on diversity and inclusion and health equity in the communities the organizations serve. The commitment coincided with the launch of the company’s Equity Alliance, an initiative focused on addressing systemic racism and resulting health disparities for Black Americans.
The new financial commitment builds upon the organizations’ existing contributions and programs to support economic, social and health causes in their communities. In 2019, the enterprise donated more than $1.2 million in grants to more than 80 Black and community development organizations.
“We are at a turning point in the historical fight for equal justice, opportunity and better health care for Black people,” said Pat Geraghty, president and CEO of GuideWell and Florida Blue. “We cannot fulfill our mission of helping people and communities achieve better health without doing the urgent and necessary work to end systemic racism.
Equity Alliance represents our long-term commitment and responsibility to accelerate support of our Black employees, members and communities. We have a long history of standing up for social and racial equality, but we need to do more. Our strength lies in our diversity and ability to solve problems together. We will make financial and operational investments to foster unity and an equal playing field and create a meaningful and lasting impact in the communities we serve.” Equity Alliance will be led by a task force of internal stakeholders and outside advisors and work in conjunction with ASPIRE, the company’s employee affinity group for people of color, to develop and implement efforts to combat systemic racism and improve health care outcomes in underprivileged communities. Initial efforts include:
● Evaluate and approve organization grant requests and expand volunteer efforts to support community partners;
● Conduct an internal assessment of organizational leadership and employee diversity representation and pay equity;
● Commission internal and external research on the impact of systemic racism on health care outcomes; and
● Convene community leaders and like-minded companies and organizations at the statewide and hyperlocal levels on ways to advance racial justice and health care outcomes in communities.