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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

June 2019

The de Beaumont Foundation, Duke University, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have released "The Practical Playbook II: Building Multisector Partnerships That Work" which provides a concise set of tools, methods, and examples to support partnerships to improve population health. Written in practical terms for readers from any background or sector, the book draws from successful partnerships in public health, healthcare, housing, transportation, business, and the faith community — providing practical tips from conception to execution to policy change.

May 2019

Nemours Children's Health System (Nemours) is launching a new initiative to explore the roles and functions of health systems within population health integrator networks. Nemours defines population health integrators as entities that serve a convening role and work intentionally and systematically across multiple sectors in a region to achieve a common purpose specific to health outcomes of an entire geography of people. In November 2018, the Kresge Foundation awarded Nemours a 2-year grant to further its work on better understanding the ways that hospitals and health systems contribute to multi-sector networks that advance population-level health goals. This project will provide Nemours an opportunity to work with a range of researchers and practitioners to advance the field’s knowledge about the specific roles and functions these health entities in multi-sector population health integrator* networks carry out. The goal of the effort is to highlight effective practices that can inform and accelerate the work of hospitals & health systems that are seeking out new ways to partner with leaders from other sectors to advance health and equity in ecosystems across the United States.

Upcoming Events

There are currently no upcoming webinars or meetings on this topic.

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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