Despite Struggles, Stockton’s Health Is on the Mend

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<p>The Northern California city of Stockton made headlines when it led the nation in foreclosures after the 2008 housing crash. While Stockton has recovered somewhat, deep-seated social problems remain: more than 40 percent of residents live at or below twice the poverty level, while one of four students drops out of high school.</p><p>But the Stockton area also stands out in a positive way: the region is one of the nation’s most improved on the Commonwealth Fund’s recent <em>Scorecard on Local Health System Performance. </em>In our <a href="/publications/case-study/2017/jul/health-care-improvement-stockton-california-collaboration-capacity">second profile</a> in a series exploring why some regions are able to improve their residents’ health and health care even with limited resources, Martha Hostetter, Sarah Klein, and Douglas McCarthy examine how Stockton’s health care organizations, schools, social service agencies, nonprofits, and the public health department forged partnerships and leveraged resources to meet residents’ considerable needs.</p>
<p>Aided in part by California’s decision to expand Medicaid, local health care providers increased their capacity and, along the way, achieved reductions in potentially avoidable hospitalizations, emergency department visits, and readmissions. Community leaders are also forming coalitions and seeking funds to address the social determinants of poor health, including poverty, violence, and poor nutrition.</p>
<p>Also see <a href="/blog/2017/if-all-health-care-local-what-does-it-take-improve" style="font-style: italic;">To the Point</a> for insights on how local leaders in the regions we profiled are working together to solve common problems, by increasing access to care, reforming the care delivery system, or addressing social factors that impede health. </p> Read more