Turning great ideas into healthier communities


Advancing the State of the Art in Community Benefit: Toolkit

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Advancing the State of the Art in Community Benefit (ASACB) is a research demonstration of the Public Health Institute and a diverse group of hospitals to develop and implement uniform standards for community benefit programming. The standards focus on better alignment of institutional governance, management, and operations, and on a more rigorous and strategic allocation of resources at the program level. Experience in the field has demonstrated that both tracks are needed to secure meaningful institutional commitment and facilitate the optimal use of limited charitable resources to address unmet health needs in local communities.

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The programmatic focus of the ASACB Demonstration is on activities outside of traditional, emergency room and inpatient-based charity care. These activities range from primary care clinical services delivered in community settings to comprehensive approaches to communitybased prevention. The approaches involve the engagement of diverse community stakeholders as ongoing partners in efforts to encourage the adoption of health behaviors and to help create social, environmental, and political conditions that support positive health behaviors.

Implementation of ASACB standards is guided by five ASACB Core Principles. These principles facilitate more effective targeting and design of program activities, leveraging internal resources by identifying and building on existing resources within local communities, and developing evidence-based systems to monitor and link clinical service delivery to communitybased prevention. To implement the ASACB standards and accomplish these objectives, partners have developed a set of tools and processes to guide the development, implementation, evaluation and documentation of community benefit activities.

This document outlines the five ASACB Core Principles, describes the essential steps in the comprehensive review process, and includes four templates to guide the review and enhancement process.