New Voices: Millennial Health Professionals and the Future of Cross-Sector Partnerships

This article has been cross-posted on the Practical Playbook blog

Health and healthcare have been discussed and debated at the national level throughout 2017. None of the problems are new: healthcare costs are unmanageably high, the system of care is fragmented, and natural disasters and emergent crises rule the headlines. However, there is a promising and growing movement that is transforming health by integrating public health, primary care, and health care more broadly. Cross-sector partnerships are at the center of this movement.

Primary care understands patient needs and quality service provision. Public health understands what healthy communities need to thrive. When combined, the individual and community perspectives inform a health system that treats and prevents diseases. The Practical Playbook released a textbook, The Practical Playbook: Public Health and Primary Care Together, that accelerates, informs, and empowers this movement by disseminating the tools of successful cross-sector partnerships to the health workforce.

Millennials entering the health field can learn from the Practical Playbook. This younger generation is technology savvy, creative, and passionate about creating change. They are not afraid to think outside of the box and adapt quickly to new rules and strategies. The marriage between health care and public health is an exciting challenge that this workforce is ready to take on with a fresh perspective. Institutions of higher education need to prepare students of all disciplines with tools of collaboration and the ability to work together in community, clinical, and governmental settings. If these new health professionals are the future of the health field, then they must be folded into the movement of cross-sector partnerships and an integrated health system.

New Voices Essay Contest

Accordingly, the Practical Playbook is inviting students and recent graduates of any health discipline to add their voice to the movement and discuss what they see as the future of cross-sector partnerships and the collaboration of health care (especially primary care) and public health. Submissions can take form of short-essays and answer one of the following questions:

1. Given the currently fragmented relationship between public health and health care, and the goals of Public Health 3.0 and the Practical Playbook, what do you see as you and your discipline’s role in bridging the gap and transforming the health system?

2. How can professionals in your discipline create and sustain cross-sector partnerships, rather than working exclusively within discipline? (Cross-sector partnership example: a hospital working with a local housing development organization on improving indoor asthma conditions.)

Students and recent graduates of any health-related professional program are invited to respond, including: public health, medicine, nursing, psychology, dentistry, social work, and health-focused programs in business, law, etc. The top submissions will be chosen for publication in the second edition of the Practical Playbook textbook. Submissions not chosen for the textbook will be considered for publication on the Practical Playbook blog.

Other guidelines for submission:

  • A PDF or Word document of 750 words or less
  • A cover page with your name, institution, year, program, and how you heard about the Practical Playbook
  • Email to corcoran@debeaumont.org
    • First round due Jan. 20
    • Second round due March 1

Written by Lizzie Corcoran

Lizzie is the 2017-2018 ASPPH Philanthropy Fellow at the de Beaumont Foundation.