What We Fund

Field-Building Approach

WhatWeFundThe Consumer Health Foundation (CHF) uses a field-building approach to its advocacy grantmaking. This approach is designed to create and sustain a group of organizations that are able to engage in political environments and develop policy recommendations. It requires strong networks of organizations with different capacities, which include the ability to:

  • Build a strong grassroots base of support
  • Analyze legal and policy issues
  • Develop media and communications strategies
  • Build and sustain strong, broad-based and diverse coalitions and alliances
  • Generate resources

Grantmaking Areas

CHF supports the organizing of low-income patients/clients, workers, community members, and immigrants and their engagement in advocacy. CHF seeks to fund community-based organizations and nonprofits in the District of Columbia, suburban Maryland, and Northern Virginia that use advocacy strategies with a racial equity lens at the local, state and regional levels to create positive social change in these two areas.

Health Reform

In the past years, health care systems have evolved in response to national, state and local policies. The percentage of people who are uninsured has declined significantly. Health care systems are developing innovative practices to integrate services, reduce costs, and address the social determinants of health. CHF believes that we need to protect and build on the gains that have been achieved that promote health equity.

CHF will support advocacy that will:

  • protect and expand access to affordable and high quality care – There is a need to address the economic difficulties that consumers experience because of lack of access to care; high costs of premiums, prescription drugs, and medical bills; increasing deductibles; and loss of health insurance coverage. Policies are needed to maintain and expand health insurance coverage and address the rising costs of health care.
  • transform the health care system especially in reducing cost and addressing the social determinants of health – There is a need for health care systems to identify practices and strategies that reduce costs. At the same time, we need strategies that will advance health equity by improving health, employment, education, housing, wealth creation, childcare, and other factors. This requires health care systems to connect and integrate their services with programs and institutions that address these social determinants of health, which will require stronger collaboration with local communities, nonprofit organizations, government agencies, business, and other stakeholders. Healthcare systems are also drivers of their local economies and can contribute to the social determinants of health through their employment, procurement and impact investing strategies.

Economic Justice

There is significant evidence that health and income are interconnected. We are also learning that wealth may be even more important than income in predicting health outcomes. CHF will support advocacy related to wages and labor laws and which will increase community wealth and ownership using new economy strategies.

CHF will support advocacy that will:

  • protect workers’ rights, including labor laws; wages and living wage standards; public benefits such as health coverage and paid sick days; and workforce development.
  • enable public policies that support new economy strategies such as worker-owned cooperative start-ups or conversions, employee stock ownership plans, local ownership of micro- and small businesses and social enterprise development.