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collaboration, collaborative, infrastructure, policy, public health system, Turning Point



  1. Nicola, Ray M. MD, MHSA


This article reviews the factors leading to successful collaborations and observations about the functioning of groups of states in collaborative coalitions by examining one specific collaboration-the Turning Point initiative. Turning Point is an initiative funded by The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) to transform and strengthen the US public health system so that it is more effective, more community based, and more collaborative in protecting and improving the public's health and well-being. A unique aspect of the Turning Point initiative is the creation of 5 National Excellence Collaboratives, with participating members from multiple Turning Point state partnerships, national public health associations, federal agencies, and diverse other organizations appropriate to each Collaborative's focus. Over 5 years, Turning Point Collaboratives developed educational materials, practice tools, and policy recommendations aimed at improving the public health system at the state and local levels and, ultimately, improving the health of the US population. The literature on collaborative partnerships and coalitions describes key elements and factors among successful partnerships. Areas of importance to success in Turning Point Collaboratives that have implications for future efforts include: continuity of leadership and membership, adequate technical assistance, diversity of Collaborative membership, regular feedback, and incentives.