Diversity Dashboard Launches

Members of UC's Community Advisory Board for the UU HEALTH Project

Representatives from UC's health colleges and the community comprised the former UU HEALTH Community Advisory Board, which helped implement health workforce diversity strategies as part of a national learning collaborative.

With input from the College of Nursing and other health colleges, a national partnership has created a web-based tool for universities to track their progress toward a diverse student body.

By: Bill Bangert

Urban Universities for HEALTH (UU HEALTH) has unveiled a web-based toolkit and data dashboard to help university leaders measure efforts to build a diverse, culturally competent health and scientific workforce. The interactive web tool allows users to select strategies, indicators and measures that align with their institution’s unique mission and local needs.

The University of Cincinnati was named one of five urban universities in 2012 to participate in UU HEALTH, a national academic learning collaborative focused on enhancing health care workforce development to improve health outcomes and reduce health disparities in local communities. UU HEALTH awarded UC’s Academic Health Center (which includes the College of Nursing) a four-year grant totaling more than $400,000 toward the research endeavor.  

"Throughout this four-year UU HEALTH project, the leaders were able to develop this best-practice dashboard that urban universities from around the country can use to help discern their progress on diversifying the student body to then diversify the local health care work force,” says Tammy Mentzel, project manager and research associate at the College of Nursing. "The toolkit can be customized to meet individual institutional goals and the dashboard will inform users as to what should be measured to meet those goals.”

In partnership with UC’s Office of Institutional Research, the UC work group developed its own data dashboard to enable AHC leadership to create and track goals toward a diverse and culturally competent students and faculty. The UC-created dashboard was used as a prototype by UU HEALTH.

UU HEALTH, which stands for Health Equity through Alignment, Leadership and Transformation of the Health Workforce, is a partnership effort of the Coalition of Urban Serving Universities/Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, the Association of American Medical Colleges, the Health Resources and Services Administrationand the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities. The project aims to address the severe shortage of qualified health professionals in underserved areas by leveraging the power of urban universities to enhance and expand a culturally sensitive, diverse and prepared health workforce.  

In June 2016, the project was extended by a three-year investment of $300,000 from UC as part of its Creating Our Third Century vision to create the Transformation of Mission-Based Health Care Through Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Into the Third Century. This project, directed by Greer Glazer, PhD, associate vice president of health affairs and dean of UC College of Nursing, aims to increase diversity in the health care workforce and eliminate health disparities in urban communities by identifying, testing and adopting evidence-based strategies and tools. Barbara Tobias, MD, professor of family and community medicine at the UC College of Medicine and medical director of The Health Collaborative will continue her involvement in this work.

"The toolkit can be customized to meet individual institutional goals and the dashboard will inform users as to what should be measured to meet those goals." — Tammy Mentzel, Project Manager & Research Associate, UC College of Nursing