Gundersen staffer appointed to Governor’s Health Equity Council

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) — Sandra Brekke, a senior consultant in the Office of Population Health at Gundersen Health System, was appointed to Gov. Tony Evers’ Health Equity Council, Evers announced Wednesday, along with 32 other members.

The purpose of the council is to address various factors that exacerbate health disparities by creating a comprehensive plan to achieve long-lasting and equitable health outcomes for all Wisconsinites.

“Ensuring that all Wisconsinites have access to quality healthcare has been and will continue to be one of my administration’s top priorities,” said Evers. “I have no doubt that the members of this council will be effective in delivering actionable solutions to help Wisconsin become an equitable place to live for all individuals.”

In a 2016 report published by the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute, the state of Wisconsin was given an overall health disparities grade of “D.”

“We didn’t need the COVID-19 pandemic to tell us that your health is closely linked to your zip code, race, and other socioeconomic factors,” said Wisconsin Department of Health Services Secretary-designee Andrea Palm. “Through this robust public-private collaboration we can target the social determinants of health that drive these health disparities and make real progress towards ensuring that every Wisconsinite has the opportunity to be as healthy as possible.”

The first meeting of the group is Wednesday.