Collaborative Opportunities to Advance Community Health (COACH)

The Challenge

Many challenging health problems arise from social issues that cannot be addressed effectively by one partner alone. Through a collective impact approach, Collaborative Opportunities to Advance Community Health (COACH) gives participants an opportunity to make real progress together in addressing the underlying social needs that give rise to poor health.

What We Do

Our Solution

Collaborative Opportunities to Advance Community Health (COACH) is an initiative that brings together hospital/health system, public health, and community partners to address community health needs in southeastern Pennsylvania. Facilitated by HCIF since launching in 2015, COACH has provided a structure for participants to explore collaborative implementation strategies as hospitals/health systems respond to community health needs assessments (CHNA) through implementation plans mandated by the Affordable Care Act.

COACH leverages a multi-stakeholder collaborative by planning, implementing, and evaluating coordinated strategies to address key community health and social needs.

COACH provides a forum for continual shared learning across member institutions, allowing members of the COACH “collaboratory” to test novel approaches and share emerging best practices with one another in real time.

Current priority focal areas for COACH’s shared implementation strategies include addressing food insecurity and advancing trauma-informed care and organizational practices.

Program Impact

Healthy Food Access “Screen and Intervene” Pilots in all participating health systems, the expansion of which has led to almost 300,000 patients being screened for food insecurity since launch.

Creation of Social Drivers & Food Insecurity Training Toolkit for clinical staff, as well as offering capacity extension and technical assistance for screening implementation.

Support of programs and platforms to test resource navigation and implementation, including clinical partner collaborations with Benefits Data Trust, Hungry Harvest, and the FAST dashboard. Connect our health system partners to community partners to strengthen referral partnerships, and extend capacity for community partners to fulfill patients’ social needs.

Serving as the foundation for continuous health system collaboration in Community Benefit, with COACH laying the groundwork that allowed our partners to build toward the successful 2019 and 2022 Collaborative Regional Community Health Needs Assessments.

Learning sessions featuring local, state, and national speakers, and shared learning across “collaboratory” members that reduce the evidence-to-practice gap in testing novel implementation strategies.

Complementary grant and research funding, including a CHOP Cares Community Grant to support our 2019 Youth Behavioral Health Summit, and grants from family foundations that have been used to directly support partner pilot programs.

CleanShot 2023-11-21 at 19.35.33@2x

Program Details

For more information or to get involved, contact Sehrish Rashid, Project Manager, here.


COACH is sponsored by the Hospital and Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania, facilitated by the Health Care Improvement Foundation, and supported by health system contributions.

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