The way that health care is delivered across America is changing. Likewise, hospitals and health systems are redefining themselves to continue to meet the needs of their patients and communities. During this time of transformation, telling the hospital story is more important than ever.

Critical to this work is shining a public spotlight on the great work that the women and men of America’s hospitals and health systems do every day —  people taking care of people. The American Hospital Association has long made it a priority to share the good work of America’s hospitals. But we need your help to continue to draw attention to the many ways your organization benefits its patients and communities.

Few people are as well-positioned to help tell that story as you, the hospital or health system trustee. As a trustee, you are in the best position to help stakeholders understand all that your hospital does for the community 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, and the challenges and opportunities that you face as you strive to continue to deliver those services.

As the AHA continues to tell the hospital story on the national stage, it has created a toolkit to help hospital leaders and trustees share their organizations’ stories at the local level. The toolkit outlines how you can be a part of this campaign to inform elected officials, policymakers, the media and consumers about how hospitals are redefining themselves in this new era and how care — and caring — has moved beyond the hospital campus and into the community.

The toolkit, which can be downloaded here, includes:

  • Tips on communicating how your organization is changing to enhance care for the community.
  • Opportunities to highlight your hospital’s story.
  • Sample materials (e.g., blogs, newsletters, social media content)

I encourage you to review the toolkit and share it with your CEO and fellow trustees to start a conversation about how you are telling your story. Our hope is that telling your organization’s story becomes a normal business practice — sharing, communicating and working with the community to advance health for all.

Andy Stern ( is chair of the American Hospital Association Committee on Governance and a trustee of Medical City Dallas Hospital in Dallas.