Strategy Design and Implementation to Promote Progress and Learning
In 2017, the Philadelphia Health Partnership launched a strategic plan with a focus on advancing health equity and addressing the social determinants of health through the integration and coordination of care and services in Philadelphia County. The plan is motivated by a desire to amplify the Foundation’s impact by determining how our resources can make the most difference. We are guided by our vision of a Philadelphia in which everyone has the opportunity to achieve optimal health and well-being and our mission to improve the health and well-being of underserved Philadelphia by supporting access to quality care and services.
To operationalize the framework, we determined that our grantmaking will be results-focused. Rather than making decisions based on reviewing individual grant applications submitted annually, we are shifting to a proactive year-round grants process focused on strategic priorities. Our priorities will be informed by ongoing engagement and analysis to understand local assets and challenges and to learn from research, practice, and community. Our strategies will leverage the full range of our resources, including not only opportunities to contribute our financial capital but also to foster collaboration and learning.
Design and implementation of our strategies will evolve over time in response to new information generated from working with our grantees and other partners to more intentionally define what we hope to achieve, assess progress toward those goals, and adapt our strategies accordingly. While the results we seek will be more clearly defined from the outset of the process, we will make active efforts to stay abreast of changing needs and circumstances in order to adapt our priorities and practices in response to shifts in the surrounding ecosystem – including the larger policy environment affecting community members, nonprofit organizations, and other partners.
Focusing on Integration and Coordination of Care and Services
To inform the development of our initiatives, we have been engaging diverse stakeholders, including our grantees, to better understand the rapidly changing healthcare system. We have found a growing body of evidence challenging the traditional fee-for-service model of healthcare delivery, which depends on the assumption that all recipients of healthcare have adequate resources and opportunities to maintain their health. In contrast, ample learning highlights the extent to which health and well-being are influenced by unequal social and physical environments long before individuals enter a doctor’s office. We will strive to use our resources to work toward ameliorating the avoidable inequalities that lead to disparate health outcomes.
Our strategic initiatives focus on supporting integration and coordination of care and services to address the social determinants of health. Our inclusion of care and services reflects the Foundation’s long-held belief that promoting optimal health and well-being requires addressing not only traditional health needs but also economic and social barriers, at both the individual and community levels. We want to upend the notion that an individual’s health can be evaluated in discrete components, instead encouraging a more holistic perspective.
The Foundation has long focused on the uninsured, underinsured, and medically underserved. Within those populations, we are currently focusing our strategies on integration and coordination of care and services for: 1) immigrants and refugees and 2) children, zero to five, and their parents and caregivers. We are also dedicating a portion of our resources to supporting our longstanding commitment to community engagement and voice, anchored in our guiding principle that people should be actively engaged in decisions that affect their health and well-being – including the design and implementation of systems, policies, and programs.