Population Health Community of Practice

The Population Health Community of Practice (PopCop) addresses the shared opportunities and challenges of using electronic health data for public and population health. PopCop supports the efforts of local and state public health agencies to use and enhance the value of their data and improve the health of the populations they serve.

Questions? Contact edmforum@academyhealth.org.


PopCop members include representatives from a range of organizations across the country, including health departments (Boston Public Health Commission, Chicago Department of Public Health, Cook County Department of Public Health, City of Philadelphia Department of Public Health, County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency, Denver Health, NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, Public Health - Seattle and King County), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and research-based institutions (Georgetown University, the University of Southern California, Johns Hopkins).

Members share insights and experiences that build and support learning – and continuously improving – the health of populations across the United States.

Meetings & Activities

The PopCop meets virtually once a month to share opportunities and shared challenges to using electronic health data, as well as lessons learned and promising practices emerging in communities across the country.. As opportunities and interest arise among members, PopCop works together on writing, collaborative grant proposals, and collaborative projects. PopCop members advise the content, serve as reviewers, and participate in the annual AcademyHealth Concordium meeting.

PopCop meetings are held monthly, generally on the third Thursday of the month. To request information on joining meetings, please email edmforum@academyhealth.org.

Work in Progress

Technology Architecture to Support Electronic Information Exchange for Public Health

PI: David Tabano, Kaiser Permanente Institute for Health Research

Health IT can provide effective mechanisms to collect data across providers and provider networks; conduct surveillance through analysis, diagnosis, and investigation of public health issues and concerns; and inform delivery of appropriate interventions and public health strategies. Technology architecture in the form of informatics platforms, federated query networks and common data models increasingly allow providers and researchers to capture and analyze electronic health records (EHR), medical claim data, sociodemographic and environmental determinants on individual and community health status. Yet, public health departments at the state, regional and federal level do not necessarily have a full understanding of the ways in which informatics platforms can complement their work. This report will describe several health IT platforms that are actively conducting population health surveillance, highlighting platforms’ uses with specific examples and applications of their implementation, governance, and data use structure. Finally, we will address how policy leaders can promote progress and growth of health IT platforms in collaboration with public health departments to improve population health departments’ ability to monitor the health of populations, conduct surveillance, and implement public health interventions.

This work is currently in progress. Please check back soon for a working draft, or contact us for more information.


The following resources may be of interest:

Funding Acknowledgement

The AcademyHealth PopCop is supported by the AcademyHealth EDM Forum. Ongoing support for the EDM Forum comes from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) Grant # U18 HS022789 and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.