Moving Forward — a Light at the End of the Tunnel



The COVID-19 pandemic has tested our nation, our economy, and our health system like never before. Throughout this crisis, AHA members were a source of stability and comfort, providing care on the front lines under unprecedented circumstances. Their heroic acts continue to be an inspiration to us all. Learn how the pandemic has impacted the relationships between AHA members and the organizations that partner with them, how the AHA has pivoted to offer partners new ways to engage with members, and the AHA’s six priorities for helping members through the challenges that continue to surround us.


AHA Report: Becoming a Health Care Business Partner of Choice

Hospitals and health systems weren’t the only organizations to weather tremendous challenges this past year. Organizations that partner with providers were also impacted — by new and shifting priorities, fewer resources and countless obstacles. To better understand how the pandemic has impacted the relationships between AHA members and the organizations that partner with them, the AHA conducted a survey. To view the survey’s results, read this report.

Among the findings:

  • Educational content is more important than ever as a tool for engaging hospitals’ interest.
  • Not surprisingly, 70% of businesses report allocating additional budget for virtual events.
  • Three in four health care solution providers (77%) say that forming new partnerships — not just with customers, but also with other health care solution providers — is a key component of their strategy, underscoring the trend toward building a health care ecosystem.

New Ways to Engage With Members

2020 brought changes to the way we gather to share ideas and information — changes that will continue. Along with the field, the AHA has pivoted to virtual conferences, educational programming and executive dialogues, while introducing new content offerings, such as AHA Transformation Talks. This new thought leadership series features experts and thought leaders at a time when our members are looking to us for best practices, market insights and new ideas.

AHA’s 2021 Strategic Priorities

As we work through the challenges that continue to surround us in 2021, the AHA’s focus will be on helping our members across six key areas:

  • Relief – COVID-19 has created unprecedented financial hardship for most of our member hospitals and health systems; we will continue to advocate for the relief and resources they need.
  • Recovery — As the field learns to adapt to a new reality, we will provide resources and messaging that demonstrate that hospitals and health systems can remain in a state of emergency readiness while safely delivering care.
  • Rebuild and Reimagine — AHA members have demonstrated flexibility and resourcefulness in the face of this pandemic. We will continue to spread the lessons learned so that we can accelerate progress as we create a better health care system for the future.
  • Equity — The events of 2020 reminded our nation that we have much work to do to address institutional racism in our country. The AHA seeks to double down on this issue by encouraging the conversation, leading the field and supporting new approaches.
  • Workforce Resilience — COVID-19 has underscored the need to develop a robust and resilient health care workforce for our nation. The AHA has committed to this goal, with plans to introduce programs and resources designed to encourage inclusion of workforce in hospital strategic planning, increased capacities through a pipeline of talent, inclusion and diversity in the workforce, and development of the skills and receptivity for technology and data to match the pace of health care innovation.
  • Behavioral Health — The population of patients with behavioral health disorders, already on the rise, is expected to surge dramatically due to COVID-19. We have embarked on a plan to increase the integration of physical and behavioral health services, to expand access to a continuum of behavioral health services, and to develop programs that reduce the stigma, and deaths of despair, for these patients.

Learn about ways you can work with the AHA as we help hospital and health system leaders navigate change, improve operations and deliver quality care through value.

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Thank you for all that you do to support the work of the AHA.

We look forward to continuing our partnerships and exploring new ones to advance the field.