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STUDY FINDS THAT DISPARITIES BETWEEN WHITE, MINORITY HEALTHCARE EXECUTIVES CONTINUE

CHICAGO, August 7, 2003—Minority healthcare executives continue to earn less than their White counterparts, according to the recently released study, A Race/Ethnic Comparison of Career Attainments in Healthcare Management, 2002, conducted by the American College of Healthcare Executives in collaboration with the Association of Hispanic Healthcare Executives, the Executive Leadership Development Program of the Indian Health Service, the Institute for Diversity in Health Management, and the National Association of Health Services Executives. When total median compensation is controlled for education and experience, White women still earn more than minority women, while White and minority men earn comparable compensation.

The study, which compares the career attainments of Asian, Black, Hispanic, Native American, and White healthcare executives, also found that the percentage of White healthcare executives in senior-level healthcare management positions exceeds that of minority executives, and a higher proportion of Whites than minorities work in hospital settings, one of the more highly compensated areas of healthcare management. Finally, minority healthcare executives expressed less satisfaction than White executives with several aspects of their jobs (see Tables 1 through 5, attached).

“While the healthcare management field has made some strides in increasing diversity at all levels, we still have work to do,“ says Thomas C. Dolan, Ph.D., FACHE, CAE, president and chief executive officer of ACHE. “All fields should be providing the same opportunities to everyone, regardless of race or ethnicity. This is particularly true for healthcare, however, where it is imperative that our organizations reflect the communities we serve.”

The 2002 race/ethnic comparison is the third such study conducted by ACHE to examine disparities in healthcare management. The first study, which was conducted in 1992 in partnership with NAHSE, compared the career attainments of Black and White healthcare executives. That study found that, although Blacks and Whites had similar educational backgrounds and years of experience in the field, Blacks held fewer top management positions, less often worked in hospitals, earned 13 percent less, and were less satisfied with their jobs.

The second study, conducted in 1997 in collaboration with AHHE, IDHM, and NAHSE, compared the career attainments of Asian, Black, Hispanic, and White healthcare executives. That study found that disparities in the proportions of top-level management positions continued to exist between White women and minority women but that there were no significant differences in the proportion of top positions held by male managers in the various race/ethnic groups. Other measures of career attainment continued to show disparities between Whites and minorities: Whites were more often employed in hospitals and, in general, expressed higher levels of satisfaction with various aspects of their jobs. While the earnings gap grew between White and Black women, it narrowed between White and Black men. Other minority executives’ earnings fell between White and Black averages.

In response to the 2002 study, the American College of Healthcare Executives will work with study collaborators to develop recommendations to address continuing race/ethnic disparities in the healthcare management field. A fourth study will then be conducted in 2007 to evaluate progress.

For a copy of the Executive Summary of the Race/Ethnic Comparison of Career Attainments in Healthcare Management, 2002, contact Ann C. Bartling, CHE, vice president, Communications, of the American College of Healthcare Executives at (312) 424-9420 or abartling@ache.org.

CONTACT: Ann C. Bartling, CHE, (312) 424-9420

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Click here for the Executive Summary of this study. (PDF format)

Click here for the the complete study text. (PDF format)