Healthy Communities Require Multi-Sector Involvement

Dates of Project: August 1, 2012–October 15, 2013

Prevention Institute analyzed the “landscape of prevention” and engaged partners within and outside the health sector to advance momentum for community prevention and align local, state, and national efforts to improve health.

A key emphasis was engaging less traditional partners with expertise in sectors with potential to be linked to health, such as transportation, business, economic development, housing, and law, among others.

“We went really broad, talking to folks who do community-based work, improvement work, but not through a public health lens, [people] who wouldn’t identify themselves as public health professionals.”—Sana Chehimi, MPH, project director

The institute released reports, conducted a series of informational meetings with congressional staff, representatives of federal agencies, and national nonprofit organizations, and engaged an email network of more than 23,000 subscribers.

Key Results

  • Prevention Institute staff:

    • Made recommendations to RWJF about how best to leverage its resources and reputation to advance the nation’s health through “a new ecology of public health.”
    • Released Towards a 21st Century Approach: Advancing a Vision for Prevention and Public Health outlining six practices that together offer leaders and advocates in prevention and public health a “transformative new vision for their work in the 21st-century.”
    • Identified four cutting-edge ways to pay for community prevention, described in How Can We Pay for a Healthy Population? Innovative New Ways to Redirect Funds to Community Prevention:
      • Wellness Trusts, a tax or other funding to support prevention and wellness interventions for targeted populations
      • Social Impact Bonds/Health Impact Bonds, market-based tool for raising capital
      • Community Benefits requirements for hospitals and health plans
      • Accountable Care Organizations, which coordinate a continuum of care for a designated patient population