Caesar will oversee health equity efforts at UNC Health and UNC School of Medicine
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Oct. 13, 2021 – UNC Health is proud to announce that Audrea Caesar, PhD, has joined the organization as its inaugural Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer (CDEIO).
In this role, Dr. Caesar will oversee and expand the DEI and health equity efforts underway at UNC Health and UNC School of Medicine.
“UNC Health is widely recognized as a leader in efforts to improve diversity and health equity for all of North Carolina,” Dr. Caesar said. “I’m eager to help further that mission and innovate in the ways we treat and serve all patients and how we care for each other as teammates. I care deeply about finding solutions to issues that limit quality healthcare for all, particularly those who are underserved.
“Our work in DEI and health equity are essential components to providing the very best care to our communities and the citizens of North Carolina,” said Dr. Wesley Burks, CEO of UNC Health and Dean of the UNC School of Medicine. “I know Dr. Caesar will bring the same passion and dedication to UNC Health in her new role that she has demonstrated throughout her career.”
Dr. Caesar comes to UNC Health from the City of Raleigh, where she created and led the city’s first Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. In that role she developed Raleigh’s first racial equity action plan emphasizing workforce equity, police-community relations, business inclusion and community engagement, and served as an advisor to the Mayor and City Council on issues related to community health, social justice and equity.
Prior to her time with the City of Raleigh, Dr. Caesar held several positions where she has helped organizations better understand the social determinants of inequity. As Director of Community Outreach & Support for Union County’s Department of Health and Human Services, she founded the Union Health Equity Collaborative, which trained more than 150 providers and staff from Union County Public Health, Atrium Health Union, Novant Health and members of the community on topics related to social determinants using Union County-specific data.
Health equity means ensuring that every person in every community can get the same high-quality care regardless of individual characteristics, such as ethnicity, gender or geographic location. A number of social, economic and cultural factors significantly affect both physical and mental health. UNC Health strives to recognize and eliminate these disadvantages that lead to healthcare disparities through initiatives that increase diversity in leadership, improve training for cultural competency, and strengthen community partnerships.
About UNC Health
UNC Health is comprised of UNC Hospitals at Chapel Hill, ranked consistently among the best medical centers in the country; the UNC School of Medicine, a nationally eminent research institution; Pardee UNC Health Care in Hendersonville; Chatham Hospital in Siler City; Johnston Health in Clayton and Smithfield; UNC Lenoir Health Carein Kinston; Wayne UNC Health Care in Goldsboro;Caldwell UNC Health Care in Lenoir; Nash UNC Health Care in Rocky Mount; UNC Rockingham Health Care in Eden, Onslow Memorial Hospital in Jacksonville, UNC Health Southeastern in Lumberton, CarolinaEast in New Bern, UNC REX Healthcare and its provider network in Wake County; and the UNC Physicians Network. For more information, please visit www.unchealth.org