2023 Top 50: Health Equity With Northwell Health, Centene and Eli Lilly

Not everyone has a fair opportunity to attain their highest level of health. Health disparities account for nearly $42 billion annually in lost productivity due to social and economic inequity.  

The CEOs of Eli Lilly & Company, Centene Corporation and Northwell Health spoke about what the companies are doing to expand health equity at the Fair360 (formerly DiversityInc) 2023 Top 50 event: “The Link Between Leadership Accountability and Data Standardization.” 

Sarah London, CEO at Centene Corporation (No. 37 on Fair360, formerly DiversityInc’s 2023 Top 50 Companies for Diversity list), is working to transform the communities it serves by addressing the social determinants of health (SDOH). SDOH are the conditions in which people live, work and worship that impact their health outcomes.  

“We can start to do the math differently and say, what is the right investment and the right resources to drive health outcomes in an open aperture and think about access to healthy foods, transportation, jobs, security, things like that,” she said.  

Eli Lilly & Company (No. 5 on Fair360, formerly DiversityInc’s 2023 Top 50 Companies for Diversity list) has been making products for people with diabetes for 100 years. Dave Ricks, Chair and CEO, said the COVID-19 pandemic forced the company to look deeper into the disparities it witnessed.  

“We thought about this problem,” he said. “But to be honest, I think the urgency of the pandemic forced new thinking and new ways of working, starting with how we develop our own products to make sure that the data we present about their effectiveness is inclusive of all communities.” 

Michael Dowling, President and CEO Northwell Health (a Fair360, formerly DiversityInc Hall of Fame Company) urged organizations to work together to solve health inequities rather than operating in silos.   

“You can act as a catalyst to get other people to work together. If we work together more, we can have an enormous effect,” he said. “There’s a collective responsibility here we all have to take responsibility for. To me, that’s the responsibility of leadership in every organization.” 

Click here for more articles, videos and photos from the 2023 Top 50 event.