Approaches to Improving Community Health: The Six-Box Framework

Across the nation, hospitals and health systems are searching for new ways to reduce costs, enhance quality of care, and improve health outcomes (the “triple aim”). As we seek to better understand and enhance the role of health institutions in community investment, we’ve been exploring the wide range of population and community health initiatives currently underway.

A well-established body of research illustrates the connections between the social, economic, and physical environments in which people live, work, and age and how long and how well they live. Increasingly, health institutions are both moving outside the walls of their facilities and going beyond traditional clinical practice, taking a more expansive view of their role in promoting health.

Based on our observations, there appear to be six different types of approaches that health institutions are using to improve health outcomes. We organize these approaches based on whether or not the intervention is clinically oriented and the breadth of the target population (patients, at-risk individuals who are likely to become patients, and the larger community).

The Six-Box Framework: Health Institution Actions to Improve Health Outcomes

Continue reading “Approaches to Improving Community Health: The Six-Box Framework”

Meet Our Team: Kate Dykgraaf

Kate, welcome to CCI! What is your role with us?

I lead behind the scenes on operations and strategy so our programs run smoothly and we can be most effective at our work.

What about the Center’s work most excites you?

Our ambitious, deeply held goal of systems change in community investment. I spent 7 years working at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), talking to communities working to deploy resources in low- and moderate-income areas. The extent of the need for affordable housing and basic infrastructure, let alone climate-resilient infrastructure, and the tools that we have to finance them are completely out of whack—we absolutely will not be able to get to the scale to address the problem unless we expand the people and resources at the table. Our approach at CCI is trying to change the system—getting people together to change the way finance gets deployed with an eye toward better outcomes for poor communities and communities of color.

Continue reading “Meet Our Team: Kate Dykgraaf”

CCI Hosts Inaugural Fulcrum Fellowship Seminar

The Center for Community Investment (CCI) launched the Fulcrum Fellowship to help disinvested communities achieve their environmental, social, and economic priorities by developing skilled and passionate local leaders. The Center will support these diverse and committed leaders, the Fulcrum Fellows, as they work to advance positive change in their respective communities.

On October 18-19, the Center for Community Investment convened the opening seminar for the inaugural class of Fulcrum Fellows in Washington, DC. During the 15-month Fellowship, the Center will work with twelve established leaders to build their skills in areas such as adaptive leadership and collaboration, broaden their vision, strengthen their networks, and sharpen their ability to advance strategies that overcome barriers to investment, making communities healthier and more sustainable.

With backgrounds in health, climate resilience, community development, urban planning, and community investment, each Fellow enters the program having identified a challenge that is significant to their organization, role, and community.

The first session, titled “Launching Together:  Key Frameworks and Results” was designed for participants to gain fluency in the Center’s capital absorption framework, define a solid 100-day plan, and make action commitments to drive their work forward.

Continue reading “CCI Hosts Inaugural Fulcrum Fellowship Seminar”

Meet Our Team: Omar Carrillo Tinajero

Omar, you are a Center Fellow here at CCI. What does that mean?

I’m involved with our local systems change work, which focuses on working with communities across the country to help them advance their work to achieve community goals. As our work advances, I’ll be heading out into towns and cities to work closely with teams on the ground. In my fellowship, I’m exposed to all the pieces of the Center’s work, and get to forge relationships with practitioners in other fields, especially my specialties of urban planning and community development.

You recently graduated from the Graduate School of Design at Harvard. Why did you choose the Center Fellowship as your next step?

Continue reading “Meet Our Team: Omar Carrillo Tinajero”

Health Institution Investments in the Determinants of Health: An Emerging Practice, Shaped By Health Care Industry Changes

One of the primary ways to increase the capital absorption capacity of a place is to expand the boundaries of the set of stakeholders who participate in the community investment system. In March, the Center published a paper that explored how hospitals and health systems participate in community investment activities by thinking broadly about their roles and resources.

Our research suggested that only a small number of health institutions are actively investing—with the expectation of a financial return—in improving the determinants of health. Over the course of this year, we’ve been focused on understanding the following questions:

  • What would it look like if health institutions considered investing in the determinants of health a strategic imperative—a necessary part of their work to remain competitive?
  • Who are the key decision makers who determine whether to invest in the upstream determinants of health and what are the considerations that matter to them?
  • What are the full range of resources a health institution may be able to use, and what are the constraints, return expectations, and level of risk for each of those sources of funds?

As part of an ongoing effort to answer these questions, we convened a roundtable of health institution experts in mid-September, which surfaced two important themes.

Continue reading “Health Institution Investments in the Determinants of Health: An Emerging Practice, Shaped By Health Care Industry Changes”