Basic human needs should be the first priority for health.
We are engaging community economic mobilty programs to create efficient and credible ways to measure the immediate and long-term benefits of their services to health and wellness as a routine part of their work. Measuring Health ROI will support both new business models for community economic mobility programs and new civic intelligence for policymakers to more efficiently allocate public resources for health improvement.
The Civic Engine is working with Rubicon Programs to value the health benefits of economic empowerment programs for low-income adults in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties. The lack of economic self-sufficiency is a fundamental barrier to achieving health. People unable to make ends meet are forced to make trade-offs among essentials like nutritious food, safe housing, childcare, heat, and transportation and have only limited capacities to pro-actively manage their own health. Moving towards a healthier society requires us to value the health contributions of organizations, like Rubicon, that build human capacity and financial independence. A fuller accounting will allow Rubicon to improve its own services and to demonstrate that investments in human development are an effective strategy for improving health.