AUSTIN, Texas – The Hogg Foundation for Mental Health at The University of Texas at Austin, in partnership with Grantmakers in Health, co-authored a new report, “A Window of Opportunity: Philanthropy’s Role in Eliminating Health Disparities through Integrated Health Care.” The report recommends strategies by which foundations can leverage their grantmaking and influence for integrated health care with the goal of reducing health care disparities among historically underserved populations.
This publication is the result of a February 2012 roundtable discussion hosted by the Hogg Foundation that was attended by representatives from a diverse group of national, regional and local foundations that support integrated health care. Participants were motivated by a shared interest in exploring how integrated health care can impact health disparities among racial and ethnic minorities and people with limited English proficiency. The report summarizes this discussion, captures key discussion points and recommends activities that foundations can undertake to improve the health status of some of the nation’s most vulnerable populations.
The report’s main finding is that the current emphasis on integrating primary health care and mental health services can act as a pivot point for addressing health care disparities that persist despite improvements in overall health in the United States. A list of guiding principles that foundations can follow in the planning and implementation of their grant initiatives is found in the report.
“We are convinced that well thought-out, creative grant programs and programmatic activities can help ensure that the twin goals of integrating mental and physical health care—treating the whole person—and eliminating long-standing health disparities are not kept in separate silos, but are mutually reinforcing,” said Dr. Octavio N. Martinez, Jr., executive director of the Hogg Foundation.
The Hogg Foundation advances recovery and wellness in Texas by funding mental health services, policy analysis, research and public education. The foundation was created in 1940 by the children of former Texas Governor James S. Hogg and is part of the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at The University of Texas at Austin.