Hospitals

The Anchor Mission Playbook

Rush University Medical Center
with support from Chicago Anchors for a Strong Economy (CASE), the Civic Consulting Alliance, and The Democracy Collaborative

Anchor institutions can play a key role in helping the low-income communities they serve by better aligning their institutional resources—like hiring, purchasing, investment, and volunteer base—with the needs of those of communities. The recommendations in this “playbook,” drawn from research carried out to help Rush University Medical Center (RUMC) align around its Anchor Mission, are being published to help other hospitals and health systems accelerate their own efforts to drive institutional alignment with community needs.

Single-Payer Would Be a Good Start, but Real Health Equity Means Tackling Economic Disparities

Dana Brown
Truthout

Dana Brown, of the Democracy Collaborative, writes for Truthout about tackling the healthcare gap by addressing economic inequality. 

The horrifying specter of Trumpcare, the shortfalls of Obamacare and the continued rise in overall health care costs in the United States have provided an important opening for proponents to put single-payer back on the table. Attempts at creating a national health insurance scheme have come close but failed several times before in US history. However, while it is imperative to ensure that every American has equal access to quality care, single-payer is insufficient when it comes to ensuring our right to health and well-being.

Read more in Truthout 

Hospitals Aligned for Healthy Communities: Inclusive, Local Sourcing

David Zuckerman and Katie Parker

Across the country, healthcare institutions are recognizing that they can creatively leverage their supply chains to address the upstream economic and environmental conditions that have the greatest impact on the health of local residents. In doing so, they can create family-supporting local jobs and build community wealth. This toolkit on local and diverse purchasing showcases examples of how hospitals and health systems are reevaluating their roles as their community’s largest purchasers, understanding that a thriving local economy is fundamental to a healthy community.

The sourcing of goods, services, and food that your hospital or health system does every day, when aligned with your mission, can help build local wealth in the communities you serve. By supporting diverse and locally owned vendors and helping to incubate new community enterprises to fill supply chain gaps, hospital and health systems like yours can leverage existing resources to drive local economic growth and build a culture of health in their communities. This toolkit can help you get started

Partners HealthCare

Founded in 1994 by Brigham and Women's Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital, Partners HealthCare employs 6,000 physicians working across 9 hospitals, 5 community health centers, and numerous home care and other health-related facilities.  To ensure community residents can access employment opportunities that offer family-sustaining wages, benefits, and opportunities for advancement, Partners has several workforce development programs.  To date, its health care training program has graduated 571 adult community residents, and its youth-focused programs employ more than 450 youth on an annual basis.  Aiming to procure goods and services from more diverse suppliers, in 2004 Partners launched a Supplier Diversity Program, which now includes over 3,000 certified/categorized Historically Underserved Businesses.

Reflecting and Planning Using a Community Wealth Building Lens

Brent Kakesako
Shelterforce

Writing for Shelterforce, Brent Kakesako takes a look at the 25th annivisary of the community wealth building field:

Our growing community wealth building field has the goal of building 'a new economic system where shared ownership and control creates more equitable and inclusive outcomes, fosters ecological sustainability, and promotes flourishing democratic and community life.'

Read more about the history of community wealth building in in Shelterforce ...

How radical co-ops are leading the way to a new, democratic political economy

Miles Hadfield
Coop News

Organisations like Cleveland’s Evergreen Co-operatives are creating opportunities for co-ops in poor urban communities and helping to decentralise planning

Coop news cover's Gar Alperovitz Principles of a Pluralist Commonwealth highlighting the link between The Democracy Collaborative work with hospitals and the long term vision of a new socierty with The Next Sytem Project... read more 

 

Advancing the Anchor Mission of Healthcare

Nancy Martin, on behalf of the Healthcare Anchor Network

In December 2016, leaders from 40 health systems gathered in Washington, DC to explore the potential to more fully harness their economic power to inclusively and sustainably benefit the long-term well-being of American communities. Together, they discussed best practices and strategies to advance the Anchor Mission of healthcare.

At the conclusion of the convening, the Healthcare Anchor Network was formed to support health systems collaborating nationally to accelerate learning and local implementation of economic inclusion strategies.

This report summarizes the events of that convening and next steps, inviting your hospital or health system to join the Network and help advance the Anchor Mission of healthcare in your institution, in your community, and nationally. 

Communities in Action: Pathways to Health Equity

National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine

In the United States, some populations suffer from far greater disparities in health than others. Those disparities are caused not only by fundamental differences in health status across segments of the population, but also because of inequities in factors that impact health status, so-called determinants of health.

Only part of an individual’s health status depends on his or her behavior and choice; community-wide problems like poverty, unemployment, poor education, inadequate housing, poor public transportation, interpersonal violence, and decaying neighborhoods also contribute to health inequities, as well as the historic and ongoing interplay of structures, policies, and norms that shape lives. When these factors are not optimal in a community, it does not mean they are intractable: such inequities can be mitigated by social policies that can shape health in powerful ways.

Can Hospitals Heal America's Communities?

Ted Howard and Tyler Norris
The Democracy Collaborative

Healthcare’s role in creating healthy communities through increasing access to quality care, research, and grantmaking is being complemented by a higher impact approach; hospitals and integrated health systems are increasingly stepping outside of their walls to address the social, economic, and environmental conditions that contribute to poor health outcomes, shortened lives, and higher costs in the first place.  

 

Advancing the Anchor Mission of Healthcare

Inaugural convening brought together health system leaders dedicated to reimagining role of healthcare

This past December, the Democracy Collaborative joined eight sponsor health systems and organizations to host Advancing the Anchor Mission of Healthcare, a two day convening of over 80 health system leaders and key stakeholders, representing 40 health systems from across the U.S. Read more about Advancing the Anchor Mission of Healthcare...

Hospitals Can Be Key to Healthy People, Healthy Economies

Johnny Magdaleno
Next City

Democracy Collaborative is highlighted in Next City "With the U.S. medical care industry spending more than $340 billion on goods and services every year, health systems and hospitals have the type of money that could revitalize the communities where they save lives." 

Hospitals Aligned for Healthy Communities: Inclusive, Local Hiring

David Zuckerman and Katie Parker

Every day, we learn more about how patients’ health outcomes are tied not only to the healthcare they receive but also to the conditions in the communities where they live. Social and economic inequities, amplified by race, often emerge as the leading factors explaining differences in health outcomes and life expectancies.

Through local and inclusive hiring, health systems can invest in an ecosystem of success that lifts up local residents; helps create career pathways for low-income, minority, and hard-to-employ populations; and begins to transform neighborhoods. In the process, health systems can develop a more efficient workforce pipeline, meet sustainability and inclusion goals, and ultimately improve the health of their communities. Establishing a local and inclusive hiring strategy is an important first step towards rethinking your health system’s role in the community. This toolkit can help you get started.

UNM Health Sciences launches 'hire local, buy local' initiative to boost economy

The University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, with the support of The Democracy Collaborative, initiated the Healthy Neighborhoods Albuquerque initiative to spur local economic development. The initiative includes growing local jobs, supporting local agriculture and providing better access to healthy foods. Read more about UNM Health Sciences launches 'hire local, buy local' initiative to boost economy...

ABQ hospitals behind initiative to hire, buy and develop local

Marissa Higdon
Albuquerque Business First

This article highlights an exciting partnership developing in Albuquerque, New Mexico among universities, hospitals, and local government that will help align healthcare institutions' resources toward community local hiring and sourcing. The inspiration for this alliance lies in Cleveland, Ohio with the Evergreen Cooperatives, a group of worker cooperatives pioneered by The Democracy Collaborative in the effort to democratize the local economy:

Hospitals lead ‘Healthy Neighborhoods’ initiative

Jessica Dyer
Albuquerque Journal

Several large anchor institutions in Albuquerque, New Mexico have adopted the local procurement practices pioneered in Cleveland, Ohio by The Democracy Collaborative and the Evergreen Cooperatives, helping galvanize the hospitals' resources and purchasing power to redirect wealth and health toward the community:

New initiative provides tools for health systems to re-invest in impoverished communities

Steven Ross Johnson
Modern Healthcare

The Democracy Collaborative's initiative to align hospitals in an effort to improve community health by increasing local hiring practices is taking root in Albuquerque, New Mexico, as the city engages with a team of large healthcare institutions committed to promoting and utilizing the strategies in the toolkits released as part of the initiative:

Eleven Principles For Creating Health

Pritpal S. Tamber
The Creating Health Collaborative

While the bio-medical definition of health focuses on the absence of disease, when asked what makes them feel healthy, communities often identify many other factors ranging from financial security to nourishing relationships. This new report from the Creating Health Collaborative, an international community of innovators, puts forth principles for “creating health beyond healthcare” and identifies key drivers shifting the field. Notable principles include embracing complexity, measuring what matters, acknowledging power imbalances, and sustainability. The report is drawn from the Creating Health Collaborative’s July 2015 convening. 

The Role of Anchor Institutions in Restoring Neighborhoods: Health Institutions as a Catalyst for Affordable Housing and Community Development

Janet Viveiros and Lisa Sturtevant
National Housing Conference

While the bio-medical definition of health focuses on the absence of disease, when asked what makes them feel healthy, communities often identify many other factors ranging from financial security to nourishing relationships. This new report from the Creating Health Collaborative, a national community of practitioners, puts forth principles for “creating health beyond healthcare” and identifies key drivers shifting the field. Notable principles include embracing complexity, measuring what matters, acknowledging power imbalances, and sustainability. The report is drawn from the Creating Health Collaborative’s July 2015 convening:

Field Guide: The Future of Health is Local

Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE)
Business Alliance for Local Living Economies

This field guide, produced by The Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE) in partnership with Kaiser Permanente, connects the dots between the social determinants of health and the framework of strategies that both BALLE and MIT's Presencing Institute have identified as the path forward in building thriving local economies: