We have a saying at Encompass Health—we’re stronger together. It’s one of our Company’s core values and a mantra that is illustrated by employees in our hospitals and home health and hospice locations every day. By recognizing value in diversity and the unique skills that each of our employees bring to the table, we are better equipped to face challenges and deliver superior outcomes as a unified team.
In 2008, Encompass Health launched an internal Inclusion & Diversity Council in order to drive inclusion when interacting with patients, employees, our community and suppliers. As we celebrate a decade of progress since the installment of this council, as well as the creation of dozens of smaller diversity committees in Encompass Health hospitals across the country, this milestone reflects the success of those efforts.
Our inclusion and diversity program—appropriately named I&D— has become an essential part of the Company identity, encouraging a positive environment rooted in respect for others. Over the past decade, the Inclusion & Diversity Council at Encompass Health has implemented several initiatives for our hospitals and will continue to expand I&D across its four pillars: workforce development, patient experience, community partnership and supplier diversity.
Workforce development – We aim to develop and retain a unique workforce that creates a diverse work environment that is knowledgeable and responsive to a diverse community of patients and colleagues.
Patient experience — We foster an inclusive healthcare setting where
all patients feel welcome and have equal access to high quality, culturally relevant care that improves patient satisfaction and clinical outcomes.
Community partnership — We cultivate relationships with local organizations across our national footprint that assist in improving the workforce and population health needs of the diverse communities that we serve.
Supplier diversity — We maintain a supplier program that offers contracting opportunities with service providers that are certified as minority-owned, women-owned, veteran-owned and small disadvantaged-owned businesses.
In 2018, council achievements included the creation of a new online career tool to help veterans find Encompass Health jobs that closely align with their specific skills, updated admitting software which includes an “other” option for patients to select when choosing gender identity, and a special icon developed within our vendor management system that allows hospitals to easily recognize diverse contracted vendors.
“By educating and supporting employees and patients on the importance of being intentionally inclusive, our teams set a positive example of how we can work better as one,” said Bryan Rogers, national director of employee relations and inclusion & diversity.
This year’s Inclusion & Diversity Annual Report demonstrates Encompass Health’s commitment to our mission and the strides that have been made in the past calendar year. Our organization’s continued success as the healthcare provider of choice depends upon understanding the unique needs, varied experiences and perspectives of our workforce, our patients and the communities they represent.
Ongoing efforts will continue to focus on improving our work environment and healthcare setting and gauging the impact that an inclusive environment has on those we seek to care for.