Population Health Panel

In this session, we will consider how organizations, including healthcare systems and public health institutions, promote the health and well-being of entire patient populations by addressing problems that impact large numbers of people. We will readdress topics that were introduced in week 1, including thinking broadly about what constitutes “health” and how we can address some of the social determinants of health. In order to do this, we need to define “population health” and understand what is meant by this term.

In addition, this session focuses on the “Triple Aim.” The Triple Aim involves three goals that are critical to improving the health of populations, whether here in the United States or elsewhere:

  1. Improving the individual experience of care.
  2. Reducing the per capita costs of care for populations.
  3. Improving the health of populations.

Activity 1:

  • Go to IHI Online Open School Modules – http://app.ihi.org/lms/home.aspx
  • COMPLETE:Module  TA 101 Lessons 1-3 Introduction to the Triple Aim for Populations
    • After you complete the module, CONSIDER…
      • How do we learn about health disparities in a given population? What kinds of data are required? What is needed to address disparities?
      • Why should physicians focus on improving the individual experience of care?
      • Why do costs matter? Is it really necessary for physicians to think about reducing per capita cost of care?
      • How can we improve the health of populations as a whole? What is the role of individual clinicians in improving population health? Why is a clinical approach not enough?

OPTIONAL Activity 2:

  • DISCUSS your thoughts on health disparities and the Triple Aim with your classmates, on your own before class.
  • After completing the IHI Module TA 101, Lessons 1-3 and considering the questions above, write a brief entry (no more than 100 words) into the Population Health Panel discussion board linked on your Canvas page for this session.
  • Before you write, read the Discussion Board entries and try to incorporate or address other students’ thoughts in your posting.

OPTIONAL Activity 3:

Key Take Home Points:

  1. Remember the World Health Organization definition of health we learned in Week 1: Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.
  2. Remember the definition of public health from Week 1: Public health is the science and the art of preventing disease, prolonging life, and organized community efforts to prevent, identify, preempt, and counter threats to the public’s health.
  3. Population health aims to address health disparities and improve health outcomes for the entire population of a specific geographic area.
  4. Population medicine aims to address health disparities and improve health outcomes for the population served by a given care provider (clinic, hospital, etc.).
  5. Both public and population health efforts rely on data that may often be limited; physicians can help improve public health data by reporting patient outcomes as required by law.
  6. All physicians can contribute in some way to health improvements at the population level by supporting public and population health programs