Insights Into Collaborative Networks Of Nonprofit, Private, And Public Organizations That Address Complex Health Issues


Community networks that include nonprofit, public, and private organizations have formed around many health issues, such as chronic disease management and healthy living and eating. Despite the increases in the numbers of and funding for cross-sector networks, and the growing literature about them, there are limited data and methods that can be used to assess their effectiveness and analyze their designs. We addressed this gap in knowledge by analyzing the characteristics of 260 cross-sector community health networks that collectively consisted of 7,816 organizations during the period 2008-15. We found that nonprofit organizations were more prevalent than private firms or government agencies in these networks. Traditional types of partners in community health networks such as hospitals, community health centers, and public health agencies were the most trusted and valued by other members of their networks. However, nontraditional partners, such as employer or business groups and colleges or universities, reported contributing relatively high numbers of resources to their networks. Further evidence is needed to inform collaborative management processes and policies as a mechanism for building what the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation describes as a culture of health.


Journal Article
Health Affairs
Hogg Graham RA, Varda D