Strategic and Administrative Support for Public Health Institute Development

About Our Services

NNPHI’s mission is to ensure public health institute capacity reaches all 50 states as well as all territories and tribes to improve population health. In its early days, NNPHI began with a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to support the growth and development of public health institutes across the country. The Fostering Emerging Institutes Program (2007-2014) provided technical assistance to several cohorts of emerging institute grantees, coordinated learning communities and connectivity between established members; convened interest groups; and documented numerous tools, resources, case studies, and stories of PHI development. NNPHI published the Guide to Development and Thriving as a Public Health Institute to be a tool for the development of PHIs—from pre-emerging groups just beginning to explore the PHI concept for their state/region, to the well-established PHIs that have been operating for 50+ years and are interested in learning from the experiences of their peers to support continued growth. Each module is designed with case studies, tools, and resources to support the practical application of the concepts.

Currently, NNPHI provides technical assistance, strategic guidance and administrative backbone support for emerging institutes in states, territories and urban and tribal Indian communities that are not currently served by a public health institute.

Our Work

NNPHI supported a seven-year feasibility study to explore the development of a public health institute dedicated to Indigenous health and wellness, providing years of technical assistance including completion of several research projects, development of the business plan, search for leadership,  development of the advisory board and many other activities. Seven Directions, A Center for Indigenous Public Health was formally launched in August of 2016 with support from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. In 2017, NNPHI applied and was selected to serve as the administrative home for Seven Directions, which included managing an 18 month grant from RWJF to enhance readiness to achieve accreditation among tribal health departments. Activities included 1- Ongoing support for the strategic planning, 2-Business development with national funders including CDC, 3- Fiscal and operations support for administration of the RWJF STARS grant, including hiring staff, providing for home office needs, contracting with 6 tribal grantees as well as 3 technical assistance providers, providing comprehensive convening support for the Our Nations, Our Journeys Indigenous Public Health Forum in August 2018, and supporting regular financial reporting to RWJF. In 2019, Seven Directions transitioned to the University of Washington. NNPHI works closely with university leadership to support ongoing CDC projects with Seven Directions through NNPHI’s umbrella cooperative agreement mechanism.  NNPHI continues to provide a wide range of administrative and technical assistance support for both the implementation of new projects and the development of the institute.

NNPHI also supported the Montana Healthcare Foundation (MHCF) with a two-year feasibility study to explore the development of a Montana public health institute. MHCF invested in the Strengthening the Montana Public Health System Study, an initiative to explore: 1. Strengthening existing non-profit public health organizations (Montana Public Health Association (MPHA), Association of Montana Public Health Association (AMPHO) and Montana Environmental Health Association (MEHA), and improving coordination among them and with other health leadership groups, and 2. The feasibility of creating a Montana public health institute (PHI). NNPHI supported a mix of methodologies that included regional roundtable meetings, key informant interviews, an extensive document review, and research into effective models for rural capacity building, to capture the needs and gaps in the Montana public health system. The study determined that Montana would benefit from the development of an institute to support the public health system and invest in strategies that demonstrate value to rural, frontier and tribal communities.

How Can NNPHI Support My State?

NNPHI is committed to capacity building for collaboration and can tailor its strategic and administrative services to help you advance your population health goals. As your partner, NNPHI’s administrative support team will work with you to determine the services that would be most beneficial for your organization and develop a package of support that meets your needs. NNPHI’s access to over 8,000 subject matter experts can be leveraged to address your technical challenges and work with you to achieve greater nimbleness, administrative excellence, and build the muscle for long lasting multi-sector collaboration.

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