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Our Commitment to Health Equity

At Tufts Medicine, we're all about making sure that everyone can achieve and maintain their full health potential. That's why we're excited to tell you about our new initiative - "We Ask Because We Care." We're going to teach our team members all about the importance of gathering important data and help our patients understand how it can benefit them and their community.

Health equity priorities 

Tufts Medicine is committed to ensuring everyone can achieve and maintain their full health potential. That is how we define health equity. To realize our bold vision of creating the most equitable and frictionless healthcare experience in the world, we are focused on four overarching health equity priorities to eliminate disparities in access to care, quality of care, and health outcomes:  

  • Access to quality and equitable care: Ensure all people, regardless of social factors, can get timely, affordable, high-quality, equitable health services from culturally competent providers.  
  • Physical, mental and social well-being: Play a critical role in supporting behavioral health and health behaviors that contribute to physical, mental, and social well-being, not just the absence of disease, or infirmity.   
  • Health-related social needs: Identify and address community-level barriers to health, influence policy through advocacy efforts, and make investments to ensure equitable access to living conditions that affect a wide range of health, functioning, and quality-of-life outcomes.  
  • Address bias in medicine: Represent the communities we serve and build workforce capacity to eliminate biases historically entrenched in medical research, education, and practice.  

Diversity, inclusion + health equity highlights report

Tufts Medicine is committed to addressing disparities and improving outcomes for our patients while fostering a culture of inclusion and belonging in our workforce. We have an ambitious vision to create the most equitable and frictionless healthcare experience in the world. In this report, gain insight into our health system's current initiatives that are helping to create equitable health experiences.


We ask because we care

To provide you with effective, equitable, and culturally competent care we need to know who you are. "We Ask Because We Care" is an important initiative that helps us gather important information to improve your care experience and address larger health disparities in our communities.

Learn about the questions we ask every patient and why:

Why are you asking questions about my race, ethnicity and preferred language, etc.?

This information helps us:

  • Know you and our community better 
  • Deliver welcoming and affirming care 
  • Provide interpreter services 
  • Support programs that improve quality of care 
  • Meet compliance standards 
What questions will I be asked?

We'll ask about your:

  • Race: The racial group or groups you identify with. 
  • Ethnicity: In the context of patient demographic data collection, this field indicates whether you identify as Hispanic/Latinx. 
  • Ethnic background: Your ethnic origin, heritage, or the birthplace of your parents or ancestors. Examples include “Chinese” or “Mexican.” Knowing our patients’ ethnic backgrounds improves our ability to identify and address the differences in care received across patient populations. 
  • Preferred (written) language: The language you feel most comfortable reading when communicating with medical staff. 
  • Preferred (spoken) language: The language you feel most comfortable speaking when communicating with medical staff. 
  • Pronouns: The personal pronouns you would like others to use when talking to or about you.   
  • Gender identity: Your internal sense of self and gender, whether that is man, woman, neither or both 
  • Sexual orientation: Who you are attracted to and want to have relationships with. 
  • Disability: A physical or mental condition or impairment for which you may require assistance or accommodation. 

Note: not all options listed below are available. Over the next several months additional options will be featured.

Who will ask me these questions?

Tufts Medicine call center, front desk and patient services staff members may ask these questions. Members of your care team may ask you, too.  

Who will see my answers?

This information is confidential. As with all information in your medical record, we only use the information if it is needed to provide care or other hospital services. Your information is always protected. 

What if I do not want to provide this information?

You do not have to answer them. It will not affect your care. Your doctor may also ask these questions privately during your visit. You do not have to share your answers. You can also ask your doctor questions. 

Can I provide my answers through MyTuftsMed instead of speaking to someone?

Patient portals are set up to allow patients to enter this information. You can enter as much or as little information as you want. Over the next few months, additional options will be available.

Access or download MyTuftsMed

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