Population Health Fuel? Community-Based Initiatives

John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media , October 23, 2013

The report features community health initiatives from across the United States, and across the world, including China, France, Australia, and Wales. Levi says the common denominator for all of these proven strategies is leadership.

"If you are talking about community hospitals, many of which are non-profit and have new requirements under the Affordable Care Act around community benefit this compendium is certainly a place to look," he says. "After hospitals have done their own health needs assessment and have identified a particular area where they would like to work this report is a good resource for identifying the kinds of interventions we know will make a difference."

"The only caveat I would put in there is that each of these initiatives needs to be adapted to a local community in some way. And it is important both as a direct resource and also sometimes we have to convince hospital CEOs and other leaders that actually this community prevention thing works. And this shows that there is a good deal of evidence to suggest that it does."

Even better, many of these proven strategies won't costs hospitals anything beyond time and commitment, and when they work the improved population health will be a net positive for the hospitals' bottom line.

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