Vital was founded with the goal of providing modern healthcare software to providers and patients everywhere, regardless of identity or circumstances. We’re working to create a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive healthcare experience for all.
Our healthcare partners are committed to serving the most vulnerable populations, and as an extension of their brand we take our part seriously. We have given thought into how to deliver an equitable experience, and it is ingrained in our culture of how we plan to develop products, solutions, and our company in the future.
Design for Everyone
Our products are built with a high level of accessibility support, as we ensure that we meet WCAG 2.0 AA, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act. We ensure that we support multiple languages in order to support diverse cultures within our products, with scalable options to add more languages as we grow into new parts of the world. Our products are designed to be accessible by a wide range of literacy levels, with an aim of grade 8 language. We are constantly looking at ways to improve the usability of our solutions, so they are intuitive to a wide range of individuals. We are proud that we see users that range in age from 10 to 100+, and we develop our solutions, language and color schemes to be gender neutral.
AI fairness is a high priority within the Vital Research team. AI systems are fundamentally representations of the data they are trained on, and in many cases that data can contain inherent biases. Without active care, there is a risk that AI systems can reinforce, or even exacerbate those biases. Within healthcare, managing that risk is especially critical.
Additionally, AI systems are not deployed in isolation. Fairness concerns must reach beyond technical solutions, like omitting gender, race and ethnicity inputs where appropriate, to consider systemic issues which might be at play in these environments.
The complexity and reach of this problem means fairness cannot be delegated to a single individual or team. At Vital we consider AI fairness a top priority at every stage of the model development process. This stretches from considering bias in the data we use, through testing for bias in our models, all the way to evaluating the risk of unfairness in our deployment.
Code of Conduct and Complaints Procedures
We have a code of conduct that reinforces the respect, trust and safety (both physical and psychological) among the global Vital team - it outlines expected standards of behavior, as well as what we determine to be unacceptable, along with the consequences should the Code of Conduct be breached.
The Code of Conduct outlines the reporting/complaints process should an individual wish to raise a concern. This Code is emphasized in new employee induction, where every new staff member must read and confirm their understanding of the document. The Code of Conduct is available to the public on our website here.
Equal Employment Opportunity / Hiring Practices
We are an equal opportunity employer and are committed to the principle of equal employment opportunities for applicants and existing team members. We prohibit unlawful, discriminatory practices and provide a safe environment free of discrimination and harassment. We are committed to ensuring that our hiring practices are fair and equitable, and that we are hiring a diverse team. In practice, we have a strong representation of LGBTQ+ team members, and a board of directors, observers, and advisors that is diverse.
We provide guidance and best practice to our team on inclusive hiring practices to ensure that our hiring is inclusive and equitable. Some of these practices include ensuring that our recruitment pipelines are consistent to ensure no conscious or unconscious benefits to some candidates over others, using structured interviews so candidates are evaluated against the same criteria, and using diverse recruitment sources.
We obtain EEO/OFCCP data for all positions recruited in the United States of America. This survey can only be used for positions located in the US, and has a specific format and questions written by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, a US Federal agency. This data is reported to our Head of Finance and HR and VP Engineering as needed.
Career Growth Pathways
We have well-documented career paths for our team members, which was developed in collaboration with the team to ensure that promotions occur against a structured framework to reduce bias.
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Consultant Engagement
Vital has engaged a DEI consultant for a review and audit of our internal hiring practices following best practices, looking for potential conscious and unconscious biases in our processes. This DEI consultant was last engaged in May 2021, and will be re-engaged as required.
Flexible Location and Working Hours
Vital’s team is remote first and location agnostic, allowing team members to work at home, or from a Vital-sponsored co-working space if their home is not best suited for a work environment. Our working hours are flexible, allowing for things such as childcare requirements, community engagements and medical appointments to be attended during the work day. These policies allow us to support and hire those with different needs, backgrounds and perspectives, including those with disabilities.
Vital provides paid parental leave to both birthing and non-birthing parents. We support and encourage the parents on our team to make use of flexible working hours to do things like childcare pickups and drop offs, and participate in activities such as coaching kids sports teams.
We have a long-standing commitment to pay equity. Globally, employees of all genders, races, and ethnicities earn the same when engaging in similar work with comparable experience and performance. Our salaries are based on up to date industry benchmarks.
We give space on our internal applications such as Slack to ensure that the correct pronouns are identified and used, and to normalize the sharing of them. Pronouns are also referenced in our Code of Conduct, as a mark of treating identities and cultures with respect.
We invest in employee training in topics associated with DEI. Examples include Ally Skills training (to educate and improve confidence in identifying marginalization and taking action as an ally for targeted groups), and cultural competence training (most recently in the form of Māori language and worldview education).
Mental Health Support
We provide access to an Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) for our team members in New Zealand, and Mental Health programming through United insurance in the US, which allows support in the form of solution based therapy from trained counsellors and psychologists.
Events & Catering
Our events are designed to be inclusive in nature, so that the full team is able to participate and enjoy social events. We commit to always hosting events that cater to a range of dietary requirements (e.g. vegan, Halal, gluten free), and with a selection of non-alcoholic drinks. We ensure that not all of our events have drinking as the “main event”, and ensure that our events do not always occur after hours so as not to exclude those with childcare or other caretaking responsibilities.
Our HR system tracks diversity, inclusion, equity and belonging statistics such as gender, age and other demographic information.
We use 15Five to measure team engagement, quickly find actionable insights and drive positive change. 15Five allows for the tracking of experiences at Vital across different demographics as well as specific DEI questions, ensuring consistent experiences across groups, and is a tool that is already being used extensively across the Vital team.
We encourage our employees to be actively involved in their communities, for example their children’s schools, environmental clean up activities, etc. Due to COVID-19 and associated lockdowns we have not been able to gather as a team to participate in community services.