Our Strategic Direction: Commitment to Health Equity

Click here to view MHM’s 20/20 Vision Strategic Plan & Framework 

Since 1995, Methodist Healthcare Ministries has fulfilled its mission of Serving Humanity to Honor God by creating access to care for uninsured, low-income individuals and families. When the organization crossed its 25-year milestone in 2020, it began to deepen those efforts through a bold strategic plan and framework committed to advancing health equity.  

Methodist Healthcare Ministries defines health equity as a framework of thought and action that strives to reduce racial and socio-economic disparities and create fair and just opportunities for every person to reach their full potential for health and life and contribute to that of others.  

Our Strategic Framework

To truly move the needle on improving population health, Methodist Healthcare Ministries knew it would need to tailor global health equity best practices for its unique and vibrant South Texas communities. Working with a preeminent expert on health equity—the Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI)—Methodist Healthcare Ministries’ Board of Directors approved a health equity framework adapted from IHI’s Pathways to Population Health model. This framework allows the organization to advance health equity by focusing on individual medical, behavioral, social and spiritual health and well-being; while also focusing on community conditions and root causes of health inequity that impact community- wide health and well-being.

 Methodist Healthcare Ministries’ strategic framework is a continuum of care centered around two pillars:

  1. Fostering the development of empowered, resilient individuals and families (Resilient Families); and
  2. By contributing to the overall health and well-being of communities through long-term, sustainable collaboration (Thriving Communities). 

Going Upstream

This health equity strategic framework moves the organization’s efforts “upstream” through the understanding that health isn’t just determined by what happens at a doctors visit, but by addressing what causes people to be sick in the first place. Moving upstream means Methodist Healthcare Ministries will intentionally improve conditions and circumstances across entire communities that impact the health and well-being of patients and clients before they might need to reach out to Methodist Healthcare Ministries or its partners for assistance. 

Going Upstream

Our Strategic Plan

The 20/20 Vision strategic plan guides the organization to implement new and innovative ways of achieving its overall goals through three, ten-year focus areas. By 1) transforming from within, and 2) working alongside communities to strengthen their capacity to improve their wellbeing; then 3)  systemic issues of inequity can be addressed to improve community-level conditions and social determinants* that impact health like education, transportation, economic mobility, digital inclusion, and food security. 

*Social Determinants of Health are the conditions in which people are born, grow, live, work, and age. They may enhance or impede the ability of individuals to attain their desired level of health. – World Health Organization

Commitment to Systemic Change

Methodist Healthcare Ministries recognizes that a combination of solutions and an integrated approach are needed to disrupt the complex cycle of intergenerational poverty. Selected strategic initiatives have been identified as priorities within the systems change focus area to address the root causes of health inequities. 

Why a New Strategic Direction?

Over the last 25 years, Methodist Healthcare Ministries has enhanced the health and well-being of countless individuals and families through its direct services, grantmaking and advocacy work. In striving to be the leader for improving wellness of the least served, the organization must continue to evaluate, not only the impact of its journey thus far, but also the overall health and well-being in communities within its 74 county service area

Our Guiding Principles

Methodist Healthcare Ministries has adopted eight key principles to guide their work moving forward:   

  1. Methodist Healthcare Ministries understands that health and wellness begin long before individuals seek clinical care and prioritizes the importance of the social determinants of health and access to quality resources and care as driving factors for the well-being of individuals, families and communities throughout their lives. 
  2. Methodist Healthcare Ministries realizes achievement of improved health and well-being of the people and communities we serve is a long-term commitment that requires intentional efforts focused on health equity. 
  3. Methodist Healthcare Ministries seeks to balance its work for the least served by providing the best quality clinical care, connecting individuals and families to needed resources, and working with communities to improve their health and well-being. 
  4. Methodist Healthcare Ministries recognizes it can’t address the needs of every community alone, but it can support, convene, and/or partner with others engaged in and/or leading efforts to improve community health and well-being.
  5. Methodist Healthcare Ministries builds relationships with churches and faith communities of all denominations to advance the health and well-being of families and whole communities.
  6. Methodist Healthcare Ministries partners with people with lived experiences to co-design, co-create, co-evaluate changes that improve health and well-being of families and communities. 
  7. Methodist Healthcare Ministries supports place-based efforts to strengthen historically underserved communities.  
  8. Methodist Healthcare Ministries sustains a culture of continuous improvement and learning where innovation is welcomed, practiced, tested, and implemented.