Our latest issue brief, “Emerging Cross-Sector Solution for Health-Related Social Needs,” discusses how health care and community-based organizations can work together to address both the social and health needs of patients. This approach requires communication and cooperation across systems that have not traditionally worked together, but offers promise for improving patient outcomes and reducing health care cost.

The understanding of the profound impact of the social and physical environment on health (i.e., the social determinants of health) provides a common ground for health care and community-based organizations to work together to address patient’s social needs, such as housing, food, safety, and transportation.

The brief offers insights on what’s needed to make these partnerships effective and how to define the value propositions of each partner, in addition to detailing how additional research could add to greater effectiveness of this approach.