Communities are increasingly seeking new ways to improve health, equity, and well-being by sharing data among public health, health care, and social services systems. In addition to leading data-sharing efforts at a local level, community partners can connect with state policymakers that have various tools and “levers” at their disposal to support these efforts to improve health, especially within communities most at risk of inequities.

To strengthen alignment and data sharing among the public health, health care, and social services sectors, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is supporting the Learning and Action in Policy and Partnerships (LAPP) national initiative, which is led by Data Across Sectors for Health in partnership with the Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS).

In the first round (2021), LAPP worked with six communities to leverage data-sharing partnerships with states to advance health, equity, and well-being. Sites in Arizona, Connecticut, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Washington, D.C., and Washington State worked to enhance community data-sharing capabilities and foster relationships between state governments, community-based organizations, and community members.

LAPP Round Two 2022

As states and communities seek to maximize the use of COVID relief funding, there is a critical opportunity to build institutional infrastructure that sustains community partnerships and addresses persistent racial disparities. In a second round of LAPP funding, CHCS and DASH supporting five sites in establishing sustainable, coordinated local or state government and community partnerships as they invest COVID-19 relief funds to advance policies for data sharing and data-integration, improve a culture of health, and advance equity. Projects include:

  • Nebraska (led by Cync Health): Developing a roadmap for making data related to housing and homelessness accessible to communities with support from COVID-19 funding
  • New Mexico  (led by the Center for Health Innovation): Supporting creation of statewide food, hunger, and farm data infrastructure to address hunger and food and water insecurity worsened by COVID-19.
  • Georgia (led by ARCHI (Atlanta Regional Collaborative for Health Improvement): Building a more equitable service access system to address persistent health-related inequities in Metro Atlanta.
  • Utah ­(led by San Juan County): Removing barriers and developing shared electronic systems to support Navajo elder services in coordinating wraparound care and services in San Juan.
  • Connecticut (led by Connecticut Data Collaborative, CT DATA): Supporting data collaboration and integration related to youth engagement and behavioral health in Hartford.

Sharing data across sectors and building relationships among community and state partners can inform decision-making to improve community health and wellbeing, strengthen systems of care, and break down silos that perpetuate disparities and poor health. Lessons from the grantee sites will be shared broadly to inform other community partnership efforts across the nation.