Moving beyond integrated care to improving population health
Changing the health of an entire population requires a shift in thinking and consensus by what we mean by 'population health'.
The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) defines population health as "an approach to health that aims to improve the health of the entire population and to reduce health inequities among population groups." Core to this approach is the recognition that there are multiple determinants of health, many of which lie beyond the traditional scope of the health system. Equally important is the focus on the distribution of health across populations and the socio-economic gradient1. A population health approach recognizes the importance of intersectoral partnerships at the community level, across and among different levels of government, and between health care providers and other professionals who have a role in influencing health.
Moving towards a population health approach requires significant enablement from population-based data and analytics (including segmentations of the population and an analysis of local needs) and shared budgets.
To learn more, read the full report.
1 Huynh, T. (2014) Population Health and Health Care: Exploring a Population Health Approach in Health System Planning and Decision Making. CIHI.