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New award from The Joint Commission, Kaiser Permanente, recognizes improvements in health care disparities

The Bernard J. Tyson Award for Excellence in Pursuing Health Care Equity honors the late chief executive officer and reform advocate Thursday, March 04 2021

(OAKBROOK TERRACE, Illinois, March 4, 2021) – Bernard J. Tyson, the late chairman and chief executive officer of Kaiser Permanente, worked tirelessly to address the health care disparities that plague the U.S. health care system. To honor his memory, The Joint Commission and Kaiser Permanente have come together to establish The Bernard J. Tyson Award for Excellence in Pursuing Health Care Equity. This annual award will recognize health care organizations and their partners that led initiatives that achieved a measurable, sustained reduction in one or more health care disparities.

“Bernard Tyson was a leader and advocate for health care equity and challenged other leaders to do the same. I am sure he is smiling his biggest smile at the thought of this award and how it will support health equity,” said Greg A. Adams, chairman and CEO, Kaiser Permanente. “This award will help honor Bernard’s legacy and continue his life’s work, while reflecting Kaiser Permanente’s ongoing commitment to establishing equity, alongside quality and safety, as a fundamental metric for health care.”

“The disproportionate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on minority and lower-income communities has highlighted the urgent need for targeted, data-informed efforts to improve health care disparities,” said Mark R. Chassin, president and CEO, The Joint Commission. “As we recognize excellent examples of work being done to improve these healthcare gaps, we hope other organizations will be inspired to take action.”

All types of health care organizations that directly deliver health care and have addressed disparities for any vulnerable population, including but not limited to race/ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, or socioeconomic status are encouraged to apply. The Joint Commission and Kaiser Permanente hope that the award will recognize achievement, inspire organizations to launch projects to address health care disparities, and provide concrete examples for others to emulate.

Applicants are encouraged to submit proposals that describe the implementation of a well-defined intervention and that resulted in a measurable, sustained reduction in disparities. Applications that do not report measurable improvements will not be considered.

Nominations will open on May 17 and close on July 5, 2021. For more information, please visit the Tyson Award webpage. Hopeful applicants can subscribe to Joint Commission Online to be reminded when the application is live here (enter your email address, and under “Content Type” select “Customize type”. Then, under the drop-down menu, select “Newsletters”).


About The Joint Commission
Founded in 1951, The Joint Commission seeks to continuously improve health care for the public, in collaboration with other stakeholders, by evaluating health care organizations and inspiring them to excel in providing safe and effective care of the highest quality and value. The Joint Commission accredits and certifies more than 22,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States. An independent, nonprofit organization, The Joint Commission is the nation’s oldest and largest standards-setting and accrediting body in health care. Learn more about The Joint Commission at

About Kaiser Permanente
Kaiser Permanente is committed to helping shape the future of health care. We are recognized as one of America’s leading health care providers and not-for-profit health plans. Founded in 1945, Kaiser Permanente has a mission to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of our members and the communities we serve. We currently serve 12.4 million members in eight states and the District of Columbia. Care for members and patients is focused on their total health and guided by their personal Permanente Medical Group physicians, specialists and team of caregivers. Our expert and caring medical teams are empowered and supported by industry-leading technology advances and tools for health promotion, disease prevention, state-of-the-art care delivery and world-class chronic disease management. Kaiser Permanente is dedicated to care innovations, clinical research, health education and the support of community health.



  • Ambulatory Health Care
  • Behavioral Health Care
  • Critical Access Hospital
  • Diagnostic Imaging Services
  • Home Care
  • Hospital
  • Laboratory
  • Long Term Care
  • Nursing Care Center
  • Office-Based Surgery