Engaging Employers in Population Health: The Philadelphia Story

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Neil Goldfarb is President and CEO of the Greater Philadelphia Business Coalition on Health (GPBCH, www.gpbch.org), an employer-led non-profit organization established in 2012 with the mission of developing best practices for maintaining a healthy workforce, and ensuring that when healthcare is needed it is safe, high-quality, accessible and affordable.

Mr. Goldfarb brings over 30 years of healthcare research and management experience to his Coalition leadership position. As Associate Dean for Research in the Jefferson College of Population Health, he was responsible for developing and carrying out the College’s research agenda, focused on healthcare quality and value, and economic evaluation of healthcare technologies. Concurrently, Mr. Goldfarb served as Director of Ambulatory Care Performance Improvement for the Thomas Jefferson University faculty practice plan.

His previous positions include Executive Director of a quality improvement consulting and data collection firm, and Vice President of Health Services for the Philadelphia region’s first Medicaid managed care plan.

Mr. Goldfarb has authored over 60 articles in the peer-reviewed literature, focused on his interests in health and disease management, quality measurement and improvement, care for the underserved, and health economics and outcomes research. He serves as adjunct faculty and teaches courses for the Jefferson College of Pharmacy and University of the Sciences.

Mr. Goldfarb is a member of the Board of Governors of the National Business Coalition on Health (NBCH), and founding co-Director of NBCH’s College for Value-based Purchasing of Health Benefits.


Overview: The Greater Philadelphia Business Coalition on Health (GPBCH) was established in 2012 with the mission of helping employers to identify and implement best practices to promote employee health and productivity, and representing employers in efforts to improve care accessibility, affordability, quality and safety. Today, GPBCH represents 45 employers and 1.5 million covered lives. This presentation will review the rationale for establishing a regional business coalition focused on health issues, the history of GPBCH, and, through discussion of GPBCH’s initiatives, provide an overview of how a business coalition can be instrumental in addressing population health needs. Activities in the areas of obesity management and diabetes prevention, creating transparency on hospital safety, and conducting research on the relationships between community health and worker health will be used to illustrate the Coalition’s broad agenda.


1) To recognize the increasing role that employers, as purchasers of half the nation’s healthcare, are playing in driving value improvement.

2) To identify specific strategies that business coalitions in Philadelphia and across the U.S. are implementing in pursuit of value.

3) To describe how employers can engage with other healthcare system stakeholders to further drive health system performance and value.

Presentation: 52:46