Saint Luke's Foundation
's stated mission is to move the needle in the area of healthcare, effectively impacting the root causes of what the organization deems as inequities in the quality of care received across all economic and social sectors.
The foundation has a long way to go to achieve its goals, but at least it knows it has a champion in former U.S. Surgeon General Dr. David Satcher, who spoke to foundation trustees and staff at The Free Medical Clinic of Greater Cleveland on October 4.
Eliminating care disparities in regards to health insurance, for example, would cut down African-American mortality rates in diabetes, heart disease and HIV/AIDS, Satcher said during his visit, part of the St. Luke's refined grantmaking philosophy that ties funding directly to three main priorities- health, community and family.
The talk "was a great opportunity for learning," says foundation president and CEO Denise San Antonio Zeman. "Dr. Satcher is putting these notions into the national limelight and giving them stature."
Satcher, who served as surgeon general from 1998 to 2001, is a graduate of Case Western Reserve University. During his tenure, he wrote "Healthy People 2010," a document written with two goals; to increase the quality of life for all Americans and reduce the inequities keeping all U.S. citizens from getting proper care.
Some progress in that department has been made in the years since Satcher stepped down, says Zeman. Still, as highlighted by the recent presidential and vice presidential debates, health care is still top mind for many Americans.
"There is more work that needs to be done," she says.
Source: Denise San Antonio Zeman
Writer: Douglas Guth