The Kresge Foundation has announced three-year grants of $2.25 million each to Nemours and the UCLA Center for Healthier Children, Families and Communities in support of efforts to accelerate innovations that improve community health.
As partners in the Moving Health Care Upstream initiative, the two organizations will work to identify innovative leaders who can advance community-based efforts to address upstream determinants of health such as access to healthy food, safe and affordable housing, and a pollution-free environment; develop a network where those innovators can share and prototype best practices, lessons learned, and outcomes; and create a system to share that knowledge and promote effective practices in other communities.
By creating an analytical framework for a redesigned health system and tapping innovators from across the country, Nemours and UCLA hope to be able to document measurable improvements in evidence-based care processes for patients. "There are numerous innovators in the healthcare system who are really focused on the social and environmental conditions that contribute to health," said David Fukuzawa, managing director of the Kresge Foundation's Health Program. "Unfortunately, information about what they’re doing and how it’s improving health in the communities they serve isn’t being captured in any systematic way or shared with others who might adopt or adapt such approaches."
Neal Halfon, director of the UCLA Center for Healthier Children, Families and Communities, will lead the initiative along with Debbie Chang, vice president of policy and prevention at Nemours. "Moving Health Care Upstream will catalyze and extend the reach of innovations designed to transform our health system from one that primarily focuses on rescue care for those who are already sick to one that can effectively optimize health by efficiently modifying the conditions that lead to illness," said Halfon.