Supporting Local Partnerships for Healthier Communities
Fresno County is a predominantly Latino area that has historically faced poor health outcomes, compared with other California counties. Lower income residents often lack access to healthy and affordable housing, clean and reliable drinking water, nearby grocery stores, medical care, public parks and other essential needs for health.
The Fresno Community Health Improvement Partnership (FCHIP), one of nine accelerator sites supported in 2020 by PHI’s California Accountable Communities for Health initiative (CACHI), is working to address the county’s health landscape. More than 150 Fresno County organizations from healthcare, social services, public health, education, business, government and community groups come together through the Health Improvement Partnership, on projects including a local food security network, a county tobacco-free coalition, a diabetes collaborative, a land use and planning group, and more.
CACHI is helping to modernize the health system and build a healthier California by supporting local collaborations like FCHIP. In Fresno and eight other sites across California, CACHI employs a model known as the Accountable Communities for Health (ACH) that goes beyond the notion that doctors and hospitals alone can improve health outcomes. Instead, the model brings together diverse community institutions, engaging the participation and inclusion of everyday residents so they are actively shaping this new approach for health and ultimately determining the health of their communities.
It’s not about CACHI, it’s actually about Long Beach and the residents of Long Beach. That is really powerful because it brings everybody together to say, ‘I see myself doing this work, I am already doing this work, I’d like to make this work better.’ As opposed to saying CACHI is telling us to do this work. No, there is already a lot of wisdom and a lot of history of people doing the work. So, it helps advance the work without requiring us to do it in a way that CACHI tells us.
A CACHI community participant from Long Beach
From 2017 through 2019, PHI supported nine CACHI accelerator sites focusing on building a set of foundational skills and knowledge to develop their ACH structure. Sites were provided one-on-one coaching, group calls, convenings, web discussions on relevant topics, and individualized supports. The nine sites are:
- All Children Thrive, The City of Long Beach Department of Health & Human
- Boyle Heights Health Innovation Community Partnership, Los Angeles/USC Wellness Center,
- Fresno Community Health Improvement Partnership, Fresno County.
- Healthy San Gabriel Valley (All in for Azusa), San Gabriel YWCA
- Hope Rising, Lake County
- Humboldt Community Health Trust, Humboldt County,
- Live Healthy Napa County, Napa County Public Health Department,
- Riverside, Center for Translational Research
- West Sacramento Accountable Community for Health, Health Education Council
I really feel that the success we had in this community was related to the foundation that was set through the work that had been done through CACHI. There is so much about relationship building...there’s so much buy in from our community about this topic, it's really pretty profound.
A Humboldt County CACHI community participant
CACHI’s work helps these sites progress through the steps needed to make their community collaborations effective. Results from capacity assessments, partner surveys, and case studies show that sites are making progress towards implementation of their work. More than three-quarters of the sites reported progress on their vision and goals, and nearly half reported having greater capacity in one or more of their potential areas of intervention: clinical services, community and social service programs, community-clinical linkages, environment and policy and systems change.
Public Health Institute’s hosting of the CACHI Learning Community has been instrumental to the ACH learning process. The monthly calls have allowed sites to share lessons learned, ask for suggestions when they encounter an impasse, and receive trainings on the complex elements.... Additionally, technical assistance trainings have been extraordinarily helpful to create innovative collateral material.
A representative from an ACH organization