Parkland Health received national recognition for the system’s community outreach initiatives in critical areas including diabetes and behavioral health. The programs began in 2019 to advance health care equity in the hospital’s community of Dallas County.

America’s Essential Hospitals honored Parkland Health with the 2023 Gage Award for Population Health in recognition of the positive health care equity outcomes of their programs.

“Advancing health care equity by reaching out into the community is critical for improving the health care system for Texans,” said Maureen Milligan, THOT president/CEO. “Parkland is well-deserving of this honor and serves as a model for what meaningful and impactful community health care engagement looks like.”

Parkland’s community health initiatives encompassed nine key health care issues: access to care, diabetes, behavioral health, breast health, maternal and child health, hypertension, pediatric asthma, sexually transmitted infections, and cultural competency.

From 2019 to 2022, the hospital reported improvement across its key focus areas for members of its community, including a 264 percent increase in primary care encounters, a 123 percent increase in annual hypertension screenings, and a 7 percent increase in annual mammograms. The hospital more than doubled the number of annual diabetes screenings during that time and supported a local farmers market and community gardens that offered fresh produce to improve access to healthy food options.

America’s Essential Hospitals and its member hospitals are dedicated to promoting equitable access to health care for everyone. The Gage Award for Population Health is their highest honor for hospitals advancing health care equity.