Understanding a collaborative effort to reduce racial and ethnic disparities in health care: Contributions from social network analysis
ABSTRACT Quality improvement collaboratives have become a common strategy for improving health care. This paper uses social network analysis to study the relationships among organizations participating in a large scale public-private collaboration among major health plans to reduce racial and ethnic disparities in health care in the United States. Pre-existing ties, the collaborative process, participants' perceived contributions, and the overall organizational standing of participants were examined. Findings suggest that sponsors and support organizations, along with a few of the health plans, form the core of this network and act as the "glue" that holds the collaboration together. Most health plans (and one or two support organizations) are in the periphery. While health plans do not interact much with one another, their interactions with the core organizations provided a way of helping achieve health plans' disparities goals. The findings illustrate the role sponsors can play in encouraging organizations to voluntarily work together to achieve social ends while also highlighting the challenges.
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ABSTRACT: The National Health Plan Collaborative (NHPC) was formed in 2004 to bring together national and regional health plans to reduce racial and ethnic disparities. This brief summarizes findings from Mathematicaâ€™s evaluation, provides background, and describes accomplishments. It also reviews the NHPC toolkit, which the group used to disseminate its work. Many plans improved organizational commitment to reducing disparities but barriers remain. The current recession may hamper work as financial and other concerns receive higher priority. Moreover, most employers are not attuned to disparities and may become less so in light of current economic conditions. Nonetheless, opportunities lie ahead.
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ABSTRACT: Within coalitions of consumer advocates formed to advance health insurance coverage expansions, engaging in united advocacy activities soon after formation might be an important precursor to attaining coalition effectiveness in shaping policy. In this article, the authors apply social network analysis (SNA) to examine how organizational characteristics and interorganizational relationships related to early collaboration on advocacy activities within advocacy coalitions. All interorganizational relationships the authors assessed were significantly associated with early collaboration in advocacy activities, with communication most associated with the differences in collaboration observed across coalitions. Among organizational characteristics, having more resources—as measured by the number of recent policy maker contacts and being the organization that directly received the grant—were statistically significant. Their findings suggest that even organizations that have not worked together before can become engaged in collaborative activities at a relatively early stage. They also show that SNA techniques can usefully be applied to advocacy evaluations.American Journal of Evaluation 06/2012; 33(2):221-239. DOI:10.1177/1098214011424201 · 2.02 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The Tampa Bay Community Cancer Network (TBCCN) is one of 25 Community Network Programs funded by the National Cancer Institute's (NCI's) Center to Reduce Cancer Health Disparities with the objectives to create a collaborative infrastructure of academic and community based organizations and to develop effective and sustainable interventions to reduce cancer health disparities. In order to describe the network characteristics of the TBCCN as part of our ongoing evaluation efforts, we conducted social network analysis surveys with our community partners in 2007 and 2008. One key finding showed that the mean trust value for the 20 community partners in the study increased from 1.8 to 2.1 (p<0.01), suggesting a trend toward increased trust in the network. These preliminary results suggest that TBCCN has led to greater collaboration among the community partners that were formed through its capacity-building and evidence-based dissemination activities for impacting cancer health disparities at the community level.Journal of Community Psychology 07/2010; 38(5):656-668. DOI:10.1002/jcop.20386 · 0.99 Impact Factor