Health Equity Through Digital

Product inclusion is essential for achieving health equity, and health equity is good for business.

To drive true health equity, health organizations of all kinds must move beyond independent, preliminary actions. Rather, they must focus on systemic changes to the culture of our organizations, the way we do our work, and the products that are generated by that system. Actions must follow words. This is especially important for digital health organizations that have witnessed a dramatic acceleration in the shift to digital care due to COVID-19.


It’s Time for an Upgrade Toward Equity

This research-based report outlines:

  1. How healthcare can learn from organizations like Nike, on how to deliver equitable products and experiences for consumers.
  2. How innovators and decision makers can develop the business case for investing in infrastructure and products that address the needs of underserved market segments.
  3. Key actions organizations can take to promote equitable health care within digital health initiatives.

Vulnerable Populations in the US (Non-MECE)

Chronically Ill

(nearly half the population) suffer from at least one chronic illness such as hypertension, heart disease or arthritis (source)


on a given night (source)



in the US live with a disability (one in four) (source)




in poverty in 2019 (source)


on a given night (source)


Featured Health Equity Projects

In collaboration with Grapevine Health, we developed video-based / health content specifically for Black and Latino populations to address perceptions and questions about COVID-19 testing and vaccinations to ensure these disproportionately impacted groups have the COVID-19 information and resources they need.

To ensure that our patients have the COVID-19 information and resources they need, particularly those who might be at risk of experiencing disproportionate rates of COVID-19, we are piloting an outreach program where text messages in English and Spanish go out to patients considered to be at high to extreme risk of contracting COVID-19.

Recommended Health Equity Resources

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Additional Reading

Health Equity

Celebrating a year of community engagement

February 24, 2024  |  Providence Cancer Institute of Oregon

At Providence Cancer Institute of Oregon, we surround our patients with cutting-edge treatments and compassionate support, and we work closely with community partners to improve access to health care across the communities we serve. This is especially important for underserved and vulnerable communities who have difficulty accessing health care services due to financial challenges, language […]

Digital Innovation

Digital perspective: It’s time for an upgrade toward equity

June 14, 2021  |  Providence Digital Innovation Group

Key takeaways: The Digital Innovation Group at Providence provides Digital Perspectives on how healthcare can be improved using technology to improve access and equity. Our series reviews each report and provides an overview of the thought-provoking insights shared by the author. This report examines how addressing the needs of vulnerable populations is not just the […]

Digital Innovation

A Community-Inspired Conversation about Wellness & Prevention

June 3, 2021  |  Providence Digital Innovation Group

Wellness and preventative care is a difficult component of patient health to build consistent habits around  – particularly for underserved communities. Per the Urban Institute, low income adults are almost 5x as likely to report being in fair or poor health as adults with household incomes at or above 400% of the federal poverty level. […]

Digital Innovation

A Community-Inspired Conversation About Behavioral Health

May 18, 2021  |  Providence Digital Innovation Group

Behavioral health is a difficult component of a patient’s condition to convey, and get suitable care for  – particularly for underserved communities. Per the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), 1 in 5 people will have a behavioral health need in a given year, and those numbers are exacerbated in black and brown […]

Digital Innovation

A Community-Inspired Conversation About Health Access

April 29, 2021  |  Providence Digital Innovation Group

[2 MIN READ | 16 MIN WATCH] Despite the myriad apps and new care options, access to quality health care remains a huge barrier for patients – particularly in underserved communities.  Per the CDC, access to quality healthcare can be limited for low-income populations by many factors, including: lack of transportation, child care, or even […]

Digital Innovation

It’s Time for an Upgrade Toward Equity

April 21, 2021  |  Aaron Martin

The events of the past year (a global pandemic, a contentious election, and protests against systemic racism, for starters) have highlighted the systemic mistakes we have made in health care. Longstanding disparities in access to care, quality of care, and health outcomes have been magnified, resulting in many health organizations across the country launching new […]

Digital Innovation

A Community-Inspired Conversation About Health Information

April 15, 2021  |  Providence Digital Innovation Group

Healthcare is complex to understand and navigate. It’s a challenge to identify accurate information, but even more difficult to make use of that information to help achieve healthier outcomes. This often creates a recurring cycle of reactive-based care that often results in ER visits and prevents our ability to get proactive about our health. Digital […]

Innovation at Scale

2021: The Year Broken Health Care Systems Begin the Healing Process

February 24, 2021  |  Sara Vaezy

The Covid-19 pandemic didn’t break healthcare. It just brought to high relief the existing fractures. This is good, because those fracture lines become the map and roadways for where we in health care innovation need to focus our efforts. And having the failures of our systems be so obvious is giving set-in-their-ways health systems, payors […]

Inside DIG

Teaming with Microsoft to combat the flu

January 12, 2021  |  Maryam Gholami

“Raising the water for all boats” is part of our DNA here at the Providence Digital Innovation Group. Our approach is to shape, build, and scale meaningful ideas here at Providence — and then offer them externally as a part of our mission of health for a better world. It’s a unique approach — and one […]

Digital Innovation

The Think Tank Ep. 1: Digital Serving the Underserved

August 20, 2019  |  Providence Digital Innovation Group

What happens when you bring together two bright minds to tackle healthcare’s challenges? This isn’t your typical brainstorm between healthcare experts. No, this is a supercharged session between two minds that work in similar, but very disparate industries. Our guests talk about a broad challenge they face, and discuss how they’ve approached the problem in […]