A diverse group of healthcare workers

Every day, our 29,000 employees and 4,600 providers show up for work at the University of Maryland Medical System (UMMS). We show up for our patients, for our communities and for each other.

We come together as ONE to create a mosaic made from our individual backgrounds, lived experiences and beliefs.

At UMMS, we celebrate individuals while recognizing the profound impact that we collectively can have on our communities – and the responsibility that comes with that.

As we move forward, we must acknowledge the work that responsibility calls us to when it comes to equity, diversity and inclusion.

Celebrating Differences, Championing Diversity

We know that when we give each other a space to share, to listen and to learn, we will grow stronger together. Most importantly, our patients, families and communities gain access to the equitable and just health care they need and deserve.

Our commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion is more than words on a page. It is a pledge to our community. We share the following benchmarks that will hold us accountable as we eliminate barriers to health equity.

  • Our leadership team is growing more diverse. Forty percent of our leaders will be persons of color by 2024.
  • Programs to attract, retain and engage our minority workforce are being developed and implemented to create equitable opportunities for advancement.
  • We are creating opportunities for mentorship at all levels with a System-wide program that matches mentors with mentees.
  • UMMS increased its minimum wage to $15 an hour – three years ahead of when Maryland plans to increase the minimum wage.
  • To strengthen connections within our communities and attract a highly qualified workforce, UMMS pledged $5.1 million to recruit registered nurses and other clinical bedside experts from community colleges in the areas we serve.
  • Unconscious bias is being addressed head-on with ongoing training, education and resources.

Taking an All Team Member Approach

Although UMMS leadership is prioritizing equity, diversity and inclusion, it is the perspectives and experiences of all our team members that must guide us.

In April 2021, we hosted a series of Equity Exchanges. These small-group discussions for team members allowed them to share their feelings and learn from their peers about issues related to diversity and inclusion, both personally and professionally.

We followed up later in the year with a Cultural Competency Organizational Assessment, an online, anonymous questionnaire that measured cultural competency across the System based on national standards.

The results of this assessment and future surveys in our communities will provide UMMS with a baseline for cultural competency. We must be able to recognize where we are succeeding and recalibrate if we are not.

Diversity Councils

The Diversity Councils at UMMS evaluate, monitor and oversee many of our equity, diversity and inclusiveness priorities.

They serve as an effective, two-way channel for communication: sharing valuable feedback with UMMS leadership on the interests, needs and opportunities at our member organizations and ways to improve the policies we've developed as a system.

Diversity Councils can vary slightly among member organizations, but generally they work on several initiatives:

  • Increase cultural awareness and sensitivity
  • Reduce bias and non-inclusivity
  • Build and strengthen relationships with our colleagues and patients
  • Ensure we are meeting hiring standards
  • Work with the community to build trust and strengthen relationships
  • Promote a healthy work-life balance

Employees can use these links to explore information about our Diversity Councils on the Insider. (You must be logged in to the UMMS network or the VPN to access these links.).

Employee Resource Groups

An inclusive workforce is a safe workplace. Our Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) represent team members who share a common purpose or interest. These groups serve several purposes, including:

  • Create a safe space to listen and share experiences
  • Look for (and share) opportunities for the organization to be more inclusive
  • Provide career development opportunities, including training, networking and mentorships

We currently offer the following ERGs at the University of Maryland Medical Center. (You must be logged in to the network or the VPN to access these links.).

Interested in starting an ERG at your location? Contact us at EDI@umm.edu