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Convergence Center For Policy Resolution

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Cross-Partisan and Cross-Sector Leaders Convene for Solutions to Policies on Social Factors of Health

Initial Report Highlights Systemic Challenges and Opportunities with Current Approaches to Social Factors of Health in Cross-Partisan Policy and Cross-Sector Collaboration

Washington, D.C., April 30, 2024 — Convergence Center for Policy Resolution (Convergence), a leader in building collaborations across political and ideological divides to solve intractable issues, today released the Discovery Report for its newest project, the Convergence Collaborative on Social Factors of Health. This addresses “upstream” influences on community and household health, often called social determinants of health, or health-related social needs. 

The report compiles findings from interviews and brainstorming sessions with dozens of key stakeholders and experts from different sectors, including healthcare, housing, social services, and nutrition, as well as government officials and organizations. 

At the publication of this report, Convergence is convening a Collaborative of a diverse group of representative stakeholders and experts through the summer of 2024, with the goal of finding consensus on a set of recommended policy changes. These federal and state actions will aim to create a significantly better policy environment for innovative collaborative efforts at all levels, to improve individual and public health. 

The Convergence Collaborative on Social Factors of Health Discovery Report explores critical areas including: 

  • Improving System Integration 
  • Financing Approaches 
  • Expanding Data and Evaluations 
  • Building the Workforce 

“Lifestyle and social factors significantly influence healthcare outcomes, yet the United States spends far less on healthcare compared to many other countries. Our healthcare system has traditionally focused on repair rather than prevention. However, there’s a positive shift happening, with various sectors now prioritizing lifestyle and social factors, and many levels of government beginning to collaborate across divides and sectors for a better health system,” notes Stuart Butler, who is leading the Collaborative and Convergence Board Member. He also serves as a Senior Fellow at Brookings Institution “Nationally, we are in a critical phase of self-examination, asking why we spend so much yet lag behind other nations in healthcare effectiveness. This is an opportune moment for Convergence to convene leaders and restructure the policy infrastructure. By incentivizing different sectors to work together, we can achieve improved health outcomes and create a more effective healthcare system.” 

“We lack established systems, policies, and practices to address and mitigate social factor effects on health,” notes Mariah Levison, CEO and President of Convergence. “I’m confident that our proven problem-solving and consensus-building methodology will guide this cross-partisan, cross-sector group at this critical time to delve into these underlying challenges and propose actionable solutions to improve national wellbeing.” 

As a neutral convenor, Convergence directs an inclusive process, informed by social science and more than a decade of practice, to drive solutions for intractable issues. Based on the Discovery Report analysis, Convergence Collaboratives engage groups of leaders and experts first to find common ground and build trust, and then to develop actionable, consensus solutions, and move forward in unlikely alliances to achieve constructive change on intractable issues. 

 

About Convergence Center for Policy Resolution 

Convergence is the leading organization bridging divides to solve critical issues. Through our time-tested collaborative problem-solving methodology, we bring people together across ideological, political, and identity lines to improve the lives of Americans and strengthen democracy. For more information, visit convergencepolicy.org. 

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