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Building Innovation Communities for a Healthier America: BraveNew works with NRHI on the HealthDoers Open Community


A 2013 Deloitte report stated that 73% of physicians believe that technology will improve the quality and delivery of care. The Network for Regional Healthcare Improvement (NRHI), headquartered in Portland, Maine, is dedicated to ensuring that those improvements take place in the near future.

NRHI, a national organization, represents over 30 Regional Health Improvement Collaboratives (RHIC), that facilitate change through their work with physicians and other healthcare providers, provider organizations, commercial and government payers, employers, consumers, and other healthcare related organizations.

Their collective goal is “better health, better care, better costs.”

Launching the Collaborative Healthcare Network

In the past, NRHI and other such organizations have faced major challenges in the transformation of the industry. A multi-stakeholder approach must be deployed due to the industry’s fragmented nature. Individuals and organizations have tackled major change, but often from “scratch” and without the insights of their peers. The siloed nature of research data, briefs, conversations and organizations was the major problem to be solved.

A community was needed that focused on increasing the awareness, adoption, and uptake of research related to healthcare innovation

In May 2014, NRHI received funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to create the Collaborative Healthcare Network (now referred to as the HealthDoers Open Community) designed to engage communities across the US to meet these challenges and accelerate healthcare improvement. Elizabeth Mitchell, NRHI’s President and CEO, noted, “We will build on the strong connections of member collaboratives and their close work with physicians, employers, patients and others who are deeply involved in healthcare transformation in their communities. NRHI is already a vibrant network of innovation and we want to expand to be a network of networks.”

The HealthDoers team envisioned this “network of networks” as a “one-stop peer network of information, resources and innovative ideas” that would provide “practical, actionable information to assist communities in fostering a national culture of health.” Its members would be the nation’s “HealthDoers,” individuals and organizations actively involved in bettering healthcare through a multi-stakeholder approach.

Building a Network of Networks

By the fall of 2014, the CHN team had further defined its mission and vision and selected BraveNew as its platform partner. As Janhavi Kirtane, the Director of CHN stated, “the Collaborative Health Network is an open and trusted peer-to-peer network that supports HealthDoers working to improve community health and healthcare using a multi-stakeholder approach, so that no one has to start from scratch. NRHI selected BraveNew to power the HealthDoers Platform, a foundational and unifying feature of the Collaborative Health Network.”

Throughout the planning process, it was clear that extensive use would be made of BraveNew’s knowledge sharing and collaboration capabilities. The HealthDoers team stressed the importance of the four pillars of the network, which would serve as the linchpins of the platform. As this case will show, the joint HealthDoers and BraveNew team chose the features and capabilities that would best facilitate these desired actions.

  • Connect. Easily find the right people, insight and resources.
  • Learn. Gain insight from national thought leaders, receive updates on new developments, and join discussions on important healthcare topics.
  • Inspire. Share and receive support and encouragement from peers.
  • Accelerate. Uncover pockets of innovation and tap into collective wisdom of the community.

In addition, NRHI and HealthDoers wanted the community to be part of an ecosystem of related but separate communities, also built by BraveNew. While the HealthDoers Open Community would be open to everyone who requested an invitation (though not viewable by the public), the other three communities in this ecosystem would be completely private.

These communities are:

  • Total Cost of Care Community. A private learning community for participants of the Robert Wood Johnson Total Cost of Care Phase 2 Program.
  • The NRHI Members Community. A private learning community for current employees of member-organizations belonging to the Network for Regional Healthcare Improvement.
  • 100 Million Healthier Lives Community. A private learning community for members of 100 Million Healthier Lives initiative - an unprecedented collaboration of change agents pursuing an unprecedented result: 100 million people living healthier lives by 2020.

Launching the Community Ecosystem

The HealthDoers’ platform was launched in early 2015. The HealthDoers/BraveNew team wove the four “pillars” into the design and structure through thoughtful planning and execution. The features and capabilities facilitate the connecting, learning, inspiring and accelerating of healthcare collaborations in an elegant and seamless manner.

Connecting HealthDoers: The Healthdoer is Not Alone

Multiple opportunities to connect, the first of the pillars of the community, to people, insights and resources become immediately apparent to the HealthDoer at the onset of her experience. She arrives at the NRHI/HealthDoers portal and sees the four communities attractively presented indicating their sibling relationship.

Once the member signs in to the HealthDoers community, she lands at the homepage, which greets her with community news (e.g., HealthDoers Series Improving Healthcare Value through Collaborative Leadership-The New Mexico Story) utilizing the announcement functionality of the platform. When the HealthDoer clicks on the “dismiss these announcements” button, she is taken to her learning feed, which contains the posts of individuals and topics that she follows as well as by community managers.

The Healthdoer will also see a dashboard of sharing tools (Link, Question, File, Post) that encourage her participation in the community. A pressing question can be asked right away, a piece of content can be shared with requests for insights.

There are additional opportunities for connection on the home page. To the left, a menu lists the sections of the community (e.g., home, members), each filled with pages built utilizing BraveNew’s dynamic web page capabilities. To find like minded peers, the HealthDoer can click on the member’s link and see brief bios of all 274 community members with their names and titles (e.g., Chief of Operations, Chief Patient Officer). The HealthDoer can immediately follow any individuals or she can learn more about any of them by clicking on the profile and viewing all of the individual’s posts, her followers, the topics of interest to her and more detail on her background and education.

Learning Made Easy

Learning, the second pillar comes about in multiple ways in the HealthDoers community. Each HealthDoer has learning needs, areas that she understands in greater detail before she can hammer out her solutions to transform the industry. Likewise, each Healthdoer has knowledge, insights and experiences that can educate other HealthDoers. The platform’s features unlock her knowledge and the knowledge of others and facilitate the sharing and mutual learning.

Learning and content resources are accessible throughout the community. The menu on the left on the home page offers links to resource rich areas in the community, in particular topics, community library and #HealthDoers on Twitter.

The Topics link takes the HealthDoer to a series of pages listing the more than 300 topics that have been tagged in community posts. The Healthdoer can follow the topic, she can click on the link and see all the previous posts as well as all the fellow members following it. If a member sees a post of value to her, she can save it to her own personal library and/or she can comment on it. The wealth of content and insight available on each topic facilitate the learning experience.

The Community Library brings the HealthDoer to a cloud based (utilizing BraveNew’s interface with Box) resource center with files shared by fellow members on critical topics (e.g., Aligning Forces for Quality). Another file holds all of the previous webinars in the HealthDoers’ series on the platform.

The #HealthDoers on Twitter link takes the HealthDoer to a feed (utilizing BraveNew’s interface with the social media networks) of all tweets. Browsing through the tweets, the HealthDoer receives inspiration the diverse insights from fellow members and thought leaders on healthcare innovation.

Inspiring the Healthdoer

Inspiration from peers, the third pillar, manifests itself throughout the community. The menu on the left on the home page provides links to such areas as groups and partners, group folders and events calendar that not only reinforce this message but also may provide the inspiration to lead to greater innovation.

The Groups and Partners area lists links to the existing groups available to the Healthdoer and also encourages her to start her own. The groups range from such big names as The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to regional organizations such as California HealthCare Foundation. She can browse through their sites, read their thought leadership and experience the innovations of others in healthcare transformation.

The Groups Folder, again drawing on the BraveNew Box interface, holds the password-protected folders of all the groups in the community collaborating on projects The HealthDoer can start her own group folder, invite fellow members, and glean insights from them on her most pressing topics. And if a HealthDoer wants to schedule a meeting with fellow group members, she can organize a video conference on the platform via an interface with Zoom.

The Events area, using Teamup, an embedded third party feature, lists all the conferences and meetings with peers that may be of interest to the community in the upcoming months (e.g., 2015 National Conference on Health, Productivity and Human Capital), many with materials and videos on line before and after the event. The HealthDoer can also upload her event and receive feedback on it before and after.

Accelerating Innovation in Healthcare: Fine-tuning the Community

Accelerating innovation, the final pillar, requires consistent monitoring and management of the community. In the HealthDoers community, administrators and community managers are constantly fine-tuning the content and messaging in the community to drive engagement even more.

HealthDoers opted for role-based controls and member segments (e.g., Colorado residents, physicians) as they structured the community. With this functionality, administrators can launch nurturing messaging campaigns with targeted content to individuals in specific roles or segments to encourage engagement.

HealthDoers also incorporated the self-view analytics portal in the community. These analytics tell powerful stories that then lead to community refining. The administrators can view the metrics on a granular level such as trending posts and category.

By understanding what drives engagement and what doesn’t, they can adjust their content and messaging accordingly. Their dashboard lists nine key metrics (e.g., New Members today, Number of Posts today), that will then update them on the success (or lack thereof) of their refinements.

Expanding the Community Universe

The Beta phase for the HealthDoers community went well. Of an initial community size of 274 members, 82% went on to return to the site at least twice a month. During this phase, members had 2,976 sessions, reading an average 13 posts per visit. They spent 13 minutes and 14 seconds on average in the community.

In the upcoming months, the HealthDoers community will be leveraging off this early success. It will also be expanding in a growing ecosystem, as NRHI will be adding six more communities to the existing four. As NRHI and HealthDoers drive towards inspiring the innovation that will transform healthcare, a universe of healthy communities will facilitate their mission.





Portland, Maine


The Network for Regional Healthcare Improvement (NRHI) is a non-profit, national NGO representing over 30 members Regional Health Improvement Collaboratives (RHICs). These multi-stakeholder organizations are working in and collaborating across regions to transform the healthcare delivery system.

Community Facts


May 2014

Total Communities:



3 Private, 1 Public


274 members (Aug 2015)

Returnee Rate:

82% / 2x per month

Avg Session Length:


Features Deployed

  • Private communities
  • Nested Communities
  • Group Calendars
  • Shared Folders
  • Social Network Interface
  • Dynamic Pages
  • Webinars
  • Virtual Conferences
  • Role-Based Access
  • Analytics
  • Invitation Campaigns
  • Topic Pages