"Rush's mission of improving the health of the individuals and communities we serve is about more than just providing quality health care," said Dr.
Rush will make its investments by partnering with Community Development Financial Institutions. These CDFIs, as they're known, are private financial institutions that help community development organizations and small businesses in underserved communities gain access to capital often unavailable by traditional lenders.
'These are investments, not donations or grants'
The first of Rush's "social impact investments" -- loans that provide both an economic and social return -- is a
Local contractors will hire and train about 200 ex-offenders and at-risk
In August, Rush also invested
"These are investments, not donations or grants," says
Better housing equals better health
Increasing affordable, high-quality housing can improve community health in several ways, according to
Social impact investing is a just one tenet of Rush' broader anchor effort, which aims to produce economic benefits from how Rush hires, purchases and invests in
Rush is one of about 30 health systems nationwide to adopt the "anchor mission" philosophy of using the organization's clinical and non-clinical assets to address these social determinants of health.
Rush detailed its plans to address the top health need of the communities it serves in the 2016-2019 Community Health Implementation Plan, filed with the federal government in November, 2016. The top goal of that plan is "Reducing inequities caused by the social, economic and structural determinants of health."
Home to about 420,000 individuals, the
"Rush's anchor initiative brings together Rush's community engagement and population health efforts," said