Leadership for population health

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Population health is an increasingly important focus for the health and care system as organisations start to work together to improve health outcomes and wellbeing for defined populations of people in England.

This programme is designed to support you to work strategically with partners from across the health and care system to improve the health of your local population. 

Who is it for?

This programme will be particularly relevant if you are: a senior public health professional who wants to play a more active role in leading system improvement, a senior NHS clinician, manager, commissioner or allied health professional in a leadership role and want to understand how to improve population health, a senior leader in local government, a community organisation or partner in the local health system.

How will you benefit from this programme?

You will get the opportunity to work with other senior leaders in health and care and with experts from The King’s Fund and further afield to:

  • explore the concept of population health
  • identify local, regional and national opportunities for improving population health and approaches that work
  • understand your leadership role and how to operate effectively in a complex system using your unique assets and experiences
  • form a network of peers to work with during and after the programme.

What will you do on this programme?

What will you do on this programme?

The programme consists of four modules each lasting two days. There will be a mix of practical exercises, expert content, learning from case studies in UK and internationally, individual and group development. You will also have the opportunity to shape The King’s Fund’s work and thinking in this area.

  • Module 1: What is population health? We will explore the concept of population health and understand the different ways the term is used in the current system. You will learn the core concepts that underpin the four pillars we have identified in our work and ways in which individuals, teams, organisations and systems can assess and strengthen these.
  • Module 2: Leading population health efforts – your role
    We will explore partnership working in the health and care system and the opportunities afforded by initiatives to address population health issues. We will look at individual and organisational roles in this, enabling you to build insights and skills for leading yourself, others, your organisation and across a system. You will have the opportunity to map your local partnerships and identify ways to be more proactively involved.
  • Module 3: Leading meaningful improvements in population health
    We will explore the many resources that currently exist to support population health improvement and how they can be used to ensure local plans are based on a genuine understanding of population needs. You will learn about what works and how to measure success, handling uncertainty, working with the public as equal partners. There will be a focus on variation and inequality to ensure best value for health and care improvements.
  • Module 4: A sustainable approach for leading population health
    We will explore the notion of sustainable leadership practices and the key components for success. This includes the development of an iterative, organic and learning approach based on our insights from transformational change case studies and also the characteristics of collective, distributive, systems and adaptable leadership styles. We will focus on anticipated future developments, needs and trends and explore ways in which these can be met.

What will you need to access these workshops?

In order to access the programme online you will need access to a PC (laptop or desktop), microphone, webcam and a good quality broadband connection. Sessions will be delivered using MS Teams or Zoom so you will need to ensure you can access these on your computer. We also strongly recommend that you access the programme in a quiet environment.

What is population health?

Watch our latest explainer animation to find out.

Watch the animation

Programme team


Durka Dougall

Senior Consultant, Leadership and Organisational Development


David Buck

Senior Fellow, Public Health and Inequalities

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