The COVID-19 pandemic has brought heightened attention to the value of a public health system that has the capacity, resources, and competencies needed to effectively address not only future emergencies, but persistent health inequities. Absent from most discussions about how to enhance the public health system, however, is the need for research evidence to guide and evaluate these system improvements.
AcademyHealth, with support from Kaiser Permanente, has launched a new project to address this need. Drawing on the previous public health systems and services research (PHSSR) agenda, published in 2012, the project will develop a renewed research agenda to ensure strong focus on the most pressing issues facing public health leaders today, including:
- policy and law,
- public health data infrastructure to inform real-time decisions,
- workforce capacity and burnout, and
- the social determinants of health.
Leveraging a longstanding relationship with the American Public Health Association as well as the AcademyHealth PHSSR Interest Group, AcademyHealth will engage key leaders in PHSSR and public health system transformation to set priorities for research to inform the next decade of public health programs, services, and systems. This agenda-setting exercise is foundational to creating a robust evidence base to recenter and reinvigorate PHSSR experts, reflect on research priorities in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, and develop a roadmap that can be used to address research gaps on public health system performance and strengthen efforts to advocate for dedicated federal PHSSR funding.
More information on the project can be found here.