Community Health

What is Community Health?

Community health is a collaborative approach to engage and work with communities, in a culturally appropriate manner, to improve the health of all persons in a defined community or communities1What is “community health”? Examining the meaning of an evolving field in public health.. Community health has the same goals and employs the same strategies as population and public health but is primarily organized around a geographic area or a community of shared interest/identity, and may be more heavily involved in local government and policy than other approaches.

How Does Community Health Differ from Population Health?

Population health is “the health outcome of a group of individuals, including the distribution of such outcomes within the group. Population health is the outcomes of the health of a population.”2How Do Population Health, Public Health, Community Health Differ?

Why Does Community Health Matter?

Health begins in the community. Communities are where the social determinants of health and social risk factors occur. Improving the quality of the care we deliver alone will not eliminate health disparities. To advance health equity we must also work to improve the health of communities where our patients live, learn, work, worship, and play. Community health is an approach that is grounded in partnership and ensures that we bring the perspectives and voices of populations we serve into our efforts to advance equity.

What you can do

Ensure community voices are at the table to guide decision making through outreach, stakeholder engagement, and community advisory boards.

Participate in an iterative community health assessment and improvement process to identify community priorities and barriers to health.

Partner with community organizations to work collaboratively to address community needs.

Key Partnerships