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Population Health

Population health is a framework that brings together health care delivery systems, public health agencies, and community organizations to improve health. Grantmakers have long invested in health promotion and disease prevention; what is different about the population health framework is that it seeks to create and sustain linkages in a unified system, where responsibility is shared and accountability is diffuse. Philanthropy can provide catalytic funding to these efforts, and GIH is well-positioned to point foundations to promising models that advance this work.

Contact Eileen Salinsky for more information about our programming in this area.

Issue Spotlight

February 2019

A new survey of professionals in state and local health departments, the 2017 Public Health Workforce Interests and Needs Survey (PH WINS), shows that nearly half the workforce could leave their organizations within the next five years. The de Beaumont Foundation and the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) launched PH WINS for the first time in 2014. This second report, which shares findings from the 2017 survey, was expanded to include local health department staff and was fielded in cooperation with ASTHO, the National Association of County & City Health Officials (NACCHO), and the Big Cities Health Coalition (BCHC). The report includes insights on what motivates and inspires public health professionals and identifies significant gaps and opportunities to strengthen the workforce.

February 2019

The Prevention Institute has released a new edition of "Community-Centered Health Homes: Bridging Healthcare Services and Community Prevention" which provides an updated description of the Community-Centered Health Homes model based on the experiences of healthcare organizations piloting it and offers practical strategies for implementation. The updated paper also includes a tool that healthcare organizations can use to assess what capacities they may need as they embark on efforts to improve community health.

Most Recent Publications

Previously Published Strategic Thinking


  • Population Health in the Affordable Care Act Era

    This background paper draws on a scan of the policy, practice, and research environment to identify the distinct but overlapping meanings of population health, identify their commonalities, and suggest a research agenda for the field, especially in the era of health reform.

  • Resource Integrator Role and Functions in Population Health Improvement Initiatives

    Achieving the Triple Aim (better quality of care, better health for populations, and lower costs) is a critical focus of health reform. Improving population health in a geographic area through seeding and funding integrators is one approach to achieving the Triple Aim. This article explores the role of integrators in promoting prevention, health, and wellness, improving quality of care, and reducing health care costs in a sustainable way by working with health care, public health, and other community partners.

  • Resource Investing and Reinvesting in Prevention

    This discussion paper, issued by the Institute of Medicine, proposes a sustainable model for funding prevention strategies. Between 1989 and 2008 California generated $2.4 billion in revenue from cigarette taxes, which was then used to fund tobacco control programs. This investment produced a savings of $134 billion in medical costs, and yielded a 5,500 percent return on investment. Yet, few of these savings have been used to reinvest in additional prevention efforts. The authors propose a model that closes this loop by using taxes, fines, and fees to reduce health care expenditures.

  • Resource Achieving Healthy Communities through Community-Centered Health Systems

    This article charts the evolution of The Kresge Foundation’s programmatic goal of reducing health disparities by promoting population health, specifically addressing the conditions and environments that lead to positive health outcomes for all Americans.

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