PWTF Group in Meeting

For the full independent evaluations, refer to Appendix A and B in the PWTF January 2017 Final Report 'JOINING FORCES: Adding Public Health Value to Healthcare Reform.' pdf format of PWTF 2016 Annual Report
file size 37MB docx format of                             PWTF 2016 Annual Report                file size 11MB

PWTF Grantee Program Results

PWTF partnerships have successfully linked clinical and community organizations to address the four conditions of pediatric asthma, hypertension, older adult falls, and tobacco use. The program reached a large number of community residents and built the capacity of many clinical and community organizations in communities with significant health burden and health disparities. In some cases, such as older adult falls, PWTF built from scratch health and public health initiatives. In others, such as hypertension, PWTF expanded existing efforts to reach larger numbers of people at risk for poor health. Partnerships have had two years to implement clinical and community interventions that typically require three to five years, or more, to demonstrate results. However, the independent evaluation only had data for a year and a half of implementation. Even at this early stage, the independent evaluation found encouraging results.

Harvard Catalyst’s independent evaluation of the Grantee Program found:

Health Outcomes and Costs

Pediatric Asthma

PWTF Results

  • Interventions appear to be very cost effective at current rates
  • Decline in overall healthcare costs in PWTF communities compared to comparison communities
  • Declining prevalence in several PWTF communities
  • Almost 6,000 school-based education and care management completions


PWTF Results

  • 0.515 to 0.945mmHg drop in Blood Pressure
  • Increase in Hypertension screening from 58 to 62%
  • Increase in controlled and treated hypertension in several PWTF communities

Projected Impact


  • Decrease of 21 to 28 Ischemic Heart Disease hospitalizations
  • Decrease of 96 to 145 stroke hospitalizations
  • Decrease of 28 to 48 Cardiovascular Disease deaths
  • $2 million to $3 million healthcare costs averted


  • Decrease of 81 to 140 Ischemic Heart Disease hospitalizations
  • Decrease of 444 to 784 stroke hospitalizations
  • Decrease of 127 to 251 Cardiovascular Disease deaths
  • $9 million to $16 million healthcare costs averted

Older Adult Falls

PWTF Results

  • Decrease in falls by 901 and 220 less injuries
  • Decrease in 7 hospitalizations and 48 other cases requiring medical care
  • $188,000 healthcare costs averted

5-Year Projected Impact

  • Decrease in falls by 3,000 and 730 less injuries
  • Decrease in 25 hospitalizations and 160 other cases requiring medical care
  • $660,000 healthcare costs averted

Tobacco Use

PWTF Results

  • 6,396 Housing Units implemented smoke-free policies

Lifetime Projected Impact

If PWTF results in 1 out of 1,000 people quitting smoking:

  • 7 less people would be hospitalized for Ischemic Heart Disease
  • 8 less people would be hospitalized for stroke
  • 8 less people would die from Cardiovascular Disease
  • $622,118 to $5.6 million in healthcare costs averted

System Changes

Clinical and Community Linkages

  • Increased capacity and coordination among clinical and community organizations
  • Enhanced teamwork, task reallocation, and cross-training
  • Community organizations added value in addressing health equity
  • New infrastructure developed for older adult falls

Community Health Workers

  • Over 72 community health workers employed to implement interventions
  • Succeeded in engaging and creating trust with hard-to-reach populations

Building Capacity

  • 304 jobs created or supported by PWTF
  • Over 500 people trained on PWTF model and interventions

Improving Environments

  • 27 policies implemented in 10 schools, 11 housing authorities, and six affordable housing management companies
  • Reaching over 22,000 students with asthma

Working on Wellness Results

The Working on Wellness program has successfully reached and delivered services to organizations that previously had no formal wellness program and few wellness policies or environmental support. In particular, this program has reached a large number of small and moderate-size employer organizations, and a substantial number of low-wage, non-college educated, and racial/ethnic minority workers. A substantial proportion of these employees had moderate to high health risks, especially being overweight or obese and not consuming the recommended amount of fresh produce per day. The independent evaluation of the PWTF Massachusetts Working on Wellness Program found an estimated savings for medical care ranging from $0.76 million to $4.07 million for the combined top three health behaviors (diet and nutrition, leisure-time exercise, and stress reduction) targeted by the programs.

This information is provided by the Bureau of Community Health and Prevention within the Department of Public Health.