Inland Empire Health Plan-led focus group opens doors to conversation and education

Health Care and Community News

For Immediate Release 

Source: IEHP


Contact: Inland Empire Health Plan 

Kristina Hernandez, Media & Public Relations Strategist

909-552-0509 | kristina.hernandez@iehp.org

Inland Empire Health Plan’s (IEHP) Health Equity Operations Team held four focus groups in May to address ways it can better educate providers and team members about the diverse and growing needs of the Inland Empire.


The goal: to ensure internal IEHP training materials are reflective of the communities served by the organization.


“We want to continue being at the forefront of creating pathways to optimal health for all,” said Lorena Chander, the health plan’s vice president of health equity. “Involving the community in every step of the way allows us to build better, stronger programming and services that create significant change in one’s quality of life.”


Focus groups were stationed at four centralized, high traffic areas: IEHP’s Rancho Cucamonga headquarters and Community Wellness Centers in San Bernardino, Riverside and Victorville. They were planned as part of the Department of Health Care Services’ (DHCS) accreditation process and modeled after IEHP’s health equity goals, which include reducing health disparities and improving community and member engagement.


Group discussion topics varied, but conversations included a look at language used in IEHP-related trainings; the benefits of translation services; and the importance of tailoring resources to the needs and trends of a growing Inland Empire population.


“We asked about verbiage and representation used and learned about some marginalized communities we missed and certain disparities not yet addressed,” shared Adai Taylor, an IEHP health equity programs liaison. “By hearing those personal stories, we are able to identify those gaps and hopefully be able to close them sometime in the future.”


Another round of focus groups is set for the first half of 2025. More information will be released closer to planned scheduled dates.

About IEHP

With a mission to heal and inspire the human spirit, Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP) is one of the top 10 largest Medicaid health plans, the largest not-for-profit Medicare-Medicaid public health plan in the country, and for the third year in a row, certified as A Great Place To Work®. Founded in 1996, IEHP supports more than 1.5 million Riverside and San Bernardino County residents enrolled in Medicaid or IEHP DualChoice (those with both Medi-Cal and Medicare). As of 2024, IEHP also offers Covered California plans, further ensuring health care access for even more IE residents. Today, IEHP has a robust network of quality doctors throughout our two counties and nearly 4,000 team members who are fully committed to the vision: We will not rest until our communities enjoy optimal care and vibrant health. To learn more, go to iehp.org.