Henry Ford launches program aimed at supporting neurodiverse team members

April 24, 2024
Courtesy photo

Ensuring and celebrating diversity, inclusivity, equity and social justice is at the core of everything Henry Ford Health does and stands for. That’s why the organization is proud to announce a new initiative that focuses on our neurodiverse community.

This month, with the help of a Delaware-based organization called The Precisionists, Inc. (TPI), Henry Ford launched its very first neurodiversity employment pilot program, which provides training and career opportunities for neurodiverse adults. In this case, the pilot is kicking off with a team of four consultants from TPI’s workforce who are performing identity access management (IAM) services for the system’s Information, Privacy and Security Office (IPSO).

While neurodiverse team members have always been a valued part the Henry Ford Health family, this is the first time the organization has a program devoted to their career development and success. The team members in this pilot program will receive direction, training and support from both their Henry Ford leaders as well as their TPI leaders.

“We deeply value and embrace the wealth of diversity reflected in our patients and their families, our team members and partners, and in the communities we’re lucky to serve,” said Christy Wheaton, Henry Ford’s Chief Information, Privacy and Security Officer. “This program will enable us to leverage the incredible perspectives and talents that neurodiverse team members bring to the table. We are thrilled to welcome our new TPI colleagues to the Henry Ford family.”

Neurodiversity is a term that describes differences in the ways people’s brains work. According to the National Institutes of Health, neurodiversity “is often used in the context of autism spectrum disorder or other neurological or developmental disorders such as ADHD or dyslexia… Referring to someone as neurodiverse is a way to focus on the positive aspects of their differences and what that can bring to the group setting.”

“There is a significant global talent gap in cybersecurity. There is also underemployment among neurodiverse workers. Neurodiverse individuals often have talents that are a perfect match for roles on our team,” Wheaton said. “Some of the strengths common in neurodiverse individuals are pattern recognition, excellence in process adherence and data analysis. Our department needs help in these areas and find this to be an incredible opportunity to augment our team and uphold the values of Henry Ford, which embrace and value diversity and inclusion.”

According to TPI, more than 80 percent of adults on the autism spectrum are either unemployed or underemployed.

“It’s a win-win situation,” said Ash Khuperkar, Director of Identity and Access Management Services. “As we establish this first staff-support model, monitor and improve the results over time, we hope to expand to other areas in IT and even other administrative support functions across our organization.”

Candidates interested in exploring employment opportunities as a part of this program should contact The Precisionists’ talent acquisition team by emailing inquiries to careers@theprecisionists.com.


MEDIA CONTACTS: mediarelations@hfhs.org


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