Diversity and Health Equity

A Mission for All of Us

Overcoming health disparities is one of our most pressing challenges.
We can make faster progress — and deliver on our mission — with your support. 

Invest in a More Equitable World

A person's race or ethnic background, gender or zip code shouldn’t determine whether they live or die from cancer, COVID-19 or any other disease. With your support of Fred Hutch, we can ensure all people get the prevention, treatment — and cures — they need. 

Lifesaving research demands curiosity, creativity and varied perspectives. That’s why diversity is a core Fred Hutch value and integral to our work. We were the first U.S. cancer center to pledge commitment to CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion, we cultivate a workplace that welcomes diverse perspectives and experiences, and we are committed to eliminating health disparities. 

For more than two decades, Fred Hutch researchers have been making inroads against inequities in treatment and outcomes for people with cancer and other diseases, including COVID-19. But more significant investments are needed if we are to achieve our mission: ending the suffering caused by cancer and other diseases — not just for some people, but for everyone. 

Fred Hutch Initiatives to Increase Diversity and Health Equity

Cancer patient Katrina Freeman is seen by Dr. Andrew Coveler at the SCCA clinic

Clinical Trials and Genetic Studies

Fred Hutch patient Deanna Saltzman (left) tests her lung function as Dr. Guang-Shing Cheng (right).

Prevention, Screening and Treatment

Explorer High School program at Fred Hutch

Educating Future Scientists

Fred Hutch's Katherine Briant, left and Jason Mendoza talk with attendees during the OCOE's Community Grant Writing Workshop, January 13, 2020, at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center in Seattle, Washington.

A Diverse and Innovative Workforce

Clinical Trials and Genetic Studies

Precision medicine is imprecise when it comes to racial and ethnic minorities. Because these communities are underrepresented in most clinical trials and genetic studies, we’re missing opportunities to identify risk factors and develop effective treatments. By boosting inclusion, we are speeding our mission to find cures for all cancers in all people.


Hispanics are twice as likely to die from stomach cancer than non-Hispanics.


Black women have a 40% higher risk of dying from breast cancer than white women.


In the U.S., 80% of children who have died from COVID-19 were children of color.


Our mission is to eliminate cancer and related diseases as causes of suffering and death for everyone.

Your support will empower researchers and communities to create a healthier and more equitable world.

Featured Researchers

featured image of Dr. Veena Shankaran

Dr. Veena Shankaran

Oncologist and health economist Dr. Veena Shankaran is shedding light on the financial impacts of cancer and guiding new programs and policies to mitigate cancer's worst impacts on patient finances.

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featured image of Dr. Jay Mendoza

Dr. Jay Mendoza

Health disparities researcher Dr. Jay Mendoza is tackling longstanding, difficult health inequities to improve the health of underrepresented minorities, especially kids.

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Dr. Vida Henderson

Dr. Vida Henderson

Dr. Vida Henderson employs community-engaged research to create health communication around screening aimed at improving gender and racial health inequities.

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featured image of Dr. Christopher Li

Dr. Chris Li

Dr. Chris Li is identifying risk factors for breast cancer, such as medications and alcohol, and is at the forefront of efforts to ensure cancer research benefits all patients. 

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“It’s incumbent on us to develop a strong, caring relationship with all the communities we work with, especially those experiencing disparities.”

— Dr. Paul Buckley, Fred Hutch vice president and chief diversity and inclusion officer

Featured Research

Sunnyside office team photo, Feb. 13 2020, for the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center in Sunnyside, Washington.

A Community Approach

The Office of Community Outreach and Engagement is reducing health disparities and addressing high rates of cancer and cancer mortality among underrpresented communities in Western Washington and the Yakima Valley. 

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 HICOR co-director Dr. Veena Shankaran welcomes attendees during her opening remarks at the 2019 Value in Cancer Care conference at the Bell Harbor Conference Center, May 13, 2019, in Seattle, Washington.

Reducing the Burden

The Hutchinson Institute for Cancer Outcomes Research works to improve cancer prevention, detection and treatment in ways that will reduce the economic and human burden of cancer — and ultimately lead to better outcomes for patients. 

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Dr. Issaka

Closing the Gaps

Dozens of Fred Hutch researchers are untangling causes of health disparities and developing solutions. Dr. Rachel Issaka is focused on reducing colorectal cancer deaths, especially for African-Americans, who are 40 percent more likely to die from the disease than whites.

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pull quote photo

“For too long, society and science have treated human beings with disparate levels of respect. It must be our work to move beyond words to action.”

— Dr. Thomas J. Lynch Jr., Fred Hutch president and director and holder of the Raisbeck Endowed Chair

Contact Us to Learn More