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Research Report: Innovative Community Investment Strategies

Innovative Community Investment Strategies: The Current State of Practice and a Vision for Greater Implementation in Southern California offers a comprehensive overview of how public health, hospitals and health systems, community development and other sectors are partnering together to improve the social determinants of health; highlights best practices, case studies, tools and resources; and provides recommendations for implementing strategies in Southern California.

Cover: Innovative Community Investment Strategies: The Current State of Practice and a Vision for Greater Implementation in Southern California

Across the country, public health, hospitals and health systems, community development and other sectors are leveraging resources and aligning investments to improve health outcomes—working together to address affordable housing, education, arts and culture, healthy food and other social determinants of health.

Released by PHI’s Public Health Alliance of Southern California, the Hospital Association of Southern California (HASC) and its Communities Lifting Communities initiative, Innovative Community Investment Strategies: The Current State of Practice and a Vision for Greater Implementation in Southern California offers a comprehensive overview of these multi-sector partnerships and community investment models; highlights best practices, case studies, tools and resources; and provides recommendations for implementing innovative community investment strategies in Southern California.

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Through a review of 100+ resources and case studies, and 30 interviews, the report identifies best practices and recommendations for implementing similar cross-sector partnerships.

For example, the California Accountable Communities for Health Initiative (CACHI) brings together multi-sector partners including hospitals, public health departments, schools, social service agencies, community organizations and others in multiple sites to align health interventions and outcomes, and explore the creation of a Wellness Fund. Where established, the Wellness Fund weaves together funding and resources from a variety of sources to fill critical community needs outside of the health care system. CACHI promotes shared outcomes and resources, and holds community engagement at its core—community members are involved in prioritizing health needs and strategies. CACHI sites also share data using the Healthy Places Index mapping tool, created by PHI’s Public Health Alliance of Southern California, to collect information on community conditions, identify communities of high needs, and align the data with policy actions.

"Our health care system has mostly focused on treating diseases rather than preventing people from getting sick in the first place. However, there’s a growing shift to focus on improving underlying community conditions. Partnerships between hospitals and health systems, public health and community development sectors and community-based organizations represent a major opportunity to significantly improve the health of neighborhoods and the people who live in them."
— Bill Sadler, PHI's Public Health Alliance of Southern California

Use the report to

  • Help make the case in your agency, institution or organization for why investing in population health and the social determinants of health through community investment strategies is important.
  • Identify your role in implementing innovative community investment strategies based on your sector, as well as opportunities demonstrate the most promise based on your community context.
  • Identify the key steps you can take to build support for innovative community investment strategies within your sector, as well as the partnerships you will need to build to be successful.
  • Provide information and resources you can share with key decision makers and stakeholders to build support for exploring and implementing innovative community investment strategies in your community.

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