The Intersection of Business, Health, and Community

August 26, 2016

Takeaways

A Health Means Business Super Champion shares how she's looking at the nexus of business and community health.

The health of a company is inextricably linked to the health of its workforce and the community where employees live and businesses reside. Corporate engagement in addressing the underlying social determinants of health, the non-clinical aspect of well-being, in the community benefits businesses, individuals and community. 

As Health Action Council continues to act as a catalyst of positive change, building bridges to better health, we have identified an obstacle slowing our progress.  A language barrier between key players - both inside and outside - of the healthcare spectrum. Customers, employers, employees, brokers, consultants, providers, community leaders, nonprofits and government institutions…each population presents a unique set of core competencies and a unique means of communication. Clear communication, collaboration and understanding is critical across stakeholders to move towards building a "culture of health."

At the recent Health Means Business Forum in Cleveland, OH, it was apparent how vast the language gap between stakeholders really is. There was great participation by businesses, community organizations, health providers, public health and local government. While there was alignment in the summary of the dialogue, each stakeholder spoke their own terminology. To move towards healthier communities where businesses thrive, we must define a common language and integrate the work amongst both public and private stakeholders. This translates into shared value and healthier communities for businesses, individuals and future generations.

As a Health Means Business Super Champion and through my work on behalf of Health Action Council, I am optimistic about new opportunities to improve the conversation around health and business and creating healthy communities.

To learn more about the links between health and economic opportunity, check out this infographic, shared at the Cleveland Health Means Business forum.