How Can We Rebuild Trust in Healthcare for Improved Health Outcomes?

Published on: March 25, 2024


Sara, Ismael and Guadalupe from Germany, Spain and Mexico.
People from marginalized groups are losing trust in healthcare – and it’s affecting their mental and physical health.

In the largest cumulative international polling of its kind, we have listened to more than 24,000 people across 10 countries to explore their experiences in healthcare.

Our first survey reached out to people in Brazil, France, Japan, UK and the U.S. Our most recent polling expanded to include Australia, Canada, Germany, Spain and Mexico, revealing consistent findings: women, ethnic minorities, LGBTQ+ and disabled people face significantly worse experiences in healthcare than people from non-marginalized groups. Experiences where they did not feel listened too, were made to feel unwelcome, judged, and even unsafe.

We refer to this disparity as the trust gap.

For the first time we also have evidence that this lack of trust is unfortunately leading to worse health outcomes. In our latest survey we found that:  

  • More than a third of people from marginalized groups said they stopped going to their current healthcare provider and looked for a new one (37%) or that they stopped going to any healthcare provider at all (15%). 
  • A fifth (19%) of people from marginalized groups said their physical health had gotten worse after losing trust.
  • Most worryingly, people from marginalized groups were twice as likely as others (17% vs 9%) to say their mental health had suffered as a result of losing trust in their healthcare provider. 

A Million Conversations Reaches Five New Countries 

It’s concerning data like this which emboldened us to launch our global €50 million initiative A Million Conversations. Its mission is to help rebuild trust in healthcare with under-represented groups.

As an innovative global healthcare company, our commitment to building a more inclusive healthcare system is unwavering. That’s why it’s essential that we extend our A Million Conversations initiative to new countries. We will deepen our engagement with underrepresented groups, and expand our Sanofi NextGen scholarship to nurture the next generation of diverse healthcare leaders. Together we can rebuild trust in healthcare and improve health outcomes for all, no matter their background.
Paul Hudson

Paul Hudson

Sanofi CEO

In 2023, we launched A Million Conversations in Brazil, France, Japan, the UK and the US. And we’re now bringing the initiative to five new countries: Australia, Canada, Germany, Mexico and Spain. And we’ve seen clear evidence of the trust gap in these countries too:


*A Million Conversations polling across Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany and Spain

How Can We Close Healthcare’s Trust Gap? 

The results of our latest survey are concerning. But there is encouraging news from the findings too. A Million Conversations is about listening, learning and ultimately building a more inclusive healthcare system so we also asked our respondents to share how their trust in healthcare could be rebuilt. “Being treated fairly” (80%) came out as the top result.

And 63% also said that “having access to healthcare providers who looked like them, talked like them or had shared life experiences” would help. 

Our Sanofi NextGen Scholarship is designed to help build the next generation of diverse healthcare leaders. Once selected, scholars are awarded funding, covering partial university and living costs. They are also given development support, mentorship and internship opportunities at Sanofi, as well as potential employment opportunities once they graduate. 

Scholars from our first five countries include 100 young people from marginalized backgrounds who aim to forge a career in healthcare, helping to ensure the healthcare system can better reflect the patients it serves. We look forward to announcing academic partnerships in the new five countries soon.

We’ve also established the A Million Conversations Advisory Group. We welcomed ten   inaugural members from around the world -    a collective of inspirational leaders from the fields of healthcare, academia, advocacy and research. We’re proud to be collaborating with these thought leaders who will bring diverse viewpoints to shaping our initiative and the policy recommendations it produces.
Find out more about our progress here – and there’s much more to come.


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Sanofi NextGen Scholars

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