News publications and other organizations are encouraged to reuse Direct Relief-published content for free under a Creative Commons License (Attribution-Non-Commercial-No Derivatives 4.0 International), given the republisher complies with the requirements identified below.

When republishing:

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Republishing Images:

Unless stated otherwise, images shot by Direct Relief may be republished for non-commercial purposes with proper attribution, given the republisher complies with the requirements identified below.

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Direct Relief often contracts with freelance photographers who usually, but not always, allow their work to be published by Direct Relief’s media partners. Contact Direct Relief for permission to use images in which Direct Relief is not credited in the caption by clicking here.

Other Requirements:

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For any additional questions about republishing Direct Relief content, please email the team here.

Health Equity

Issues & Solutions

Direct Relief’s Fund for Health Equity was created to increase access to health care and improve health outcomes for marginalized communities.

Todderick “TK” King LVN (right) performs blood work with a patient in a temporary examination room at TAN Healthcare’s Mobile Clinic setup at Sacred Heart Church in Raywood, TX. TAN Healthcare, a Federally Qualified Health Center(FQHC) located in Beaumont and Orange, Texas, provides primary and preventive care in a consistent and affordable manner, improving the health of our communities. Their mobile clinic transport van, made possible by Direct Relief, services surrounding communities; bringing access to health services to those in rural areas.

In Brief

Through the Fund for Health Equity, Direct Relief is funding on-the-ground organizations addressing health inequities.

These groups have deep ties in the communities they serve and are working to diversify the healthcare workforce, eliminate health disparities, and employ technology to make healthcare more accessible and reliable to their patients.

Factors such as education, employment, income, family social support, community safety, air, water, housing, transit, and behaviors all contribute to poor health outcomes and will be addressed by groups receiving funding.

Addressing Inequities in Health

Marginalized communities have long experienced worse health outcomes and are less likely to receive the medical care they need. That’s true of people of color, LGBTQ+ individuals, people experiencing homelessness, and others as well.

These striking injustices are one of the modern-day effects of a long history of discriminatory practices, policies, and traditions.

Access to health care is just a single aspect of a person’s health. Race and ethnicity, housing situation, employment status, living environment, and spoken language, among other interrelated factors, will all play significant roles in an individual’s health outcomes.

The Fund for Health Equity

Direct Relief’s Fund for Health Equity provides financial support to community health centers, free and charitable clinics, educational institutions and other community-based organizations fighting the inequities that further health disparities.

The Fund is steered by an Advisory Council with deep connections and experience in communities in which the effects of racism and socioeconomic disparities persist.

The members are:

  • Co-Chair Regina Benjamin, MD, MBA, 18th US Surgeon General of the United States, Founder BayouClinic, Inc.
  • Co-Chair Byron Scott, MD, MBA, COO of Direct Relief and Chair of its Medical Advisory Council
  • Martha Dawson, DNP, MSN, RN, FACHE, President and CEO President of the National Black Nurses Association, Associate Professor at the University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • Jane Delgado, Ph.D., MS, President and CEO of the National Alliance for Hispanic Health
  • Gail Small, JD, Head Chief Woman, a citizen of the Northern Cheyenne Tribe

The Fund for Health Equity supports organizations making measurable progress in the following areas:

1. Diversifying the workforce

Direct Relief’s goal is to support people from all backgrounds as they undergo the certification and training to become nurses, community health workers, health navigators, and other essential health care workers and make these career paths more accessible to diverse groups of people.

2. Eliminating health disparities

A wide range of factors, from the living environment to financial situations, will play a role in a person’s health outcomes. Direct Relief funds organizations working to reduce these disparities while improving population health, preventing disease, and responding to behavioral health and substance abuse challenges.

3. Supporting digital health

Many organizations use new technology – including telehealth platforms, mobile medical units, and renewable energy – to expand access and deliver better patient care. Direct Relief’s aim is to support them in these innovative efforts, helping them respond to the needs of their communities.

Applications to the Fund for Health Equity are by invitation only.

Since 2021, Direct Relief, through its Fund for Equity, has granted more than $50 million to 161 organizations across the U.S.

Fund for Health Equity Grantees

Giving is Good Medicine

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