You are here

Population Health Management

This Working Party was established to promote the development of population health management within the actuarial profession and the health sector.

Background to the working party:

The Health and Care Research Sub-committee launched a member-led working party in 2018 to support the development of population health management.  The National Health Service (NHS) in the UK is tackling the challenge of rising healthcare demand and constrained funding by implementing new models of care to develop integrated local healthcare systems for a defined population.  To underpin delivery of the improved outcomes, better care and value for money that are being sought, it is essential that healthcare systems develop a comprehensive understanding of the health characteristics of their population – for example, current patterns of care demand, forecasting future demand, and predicting the effects of interventions.  The actuarial skillset has much to offer in building and deploying such demographic, risk modelling and analytical capability, but there is currently limited awareness of this across the NHS.

Population Health Management considers the distribution of health outcomes within a population and how to impact these outcomes in the most optimal way for the group as a whole.  It is a wide field and so the working party initially focussed on the specific topic of impactability modelling.  The predictive risk stratification and segmentation models typically utilised in population health approaches have focused on identifying population groups that have a high risk of experiencing an adverse event, such as an unplanned hospital admission, or have a high-cost profile.

However, the success of risk stratification at the whole-population level depends not just on identifying those most at risk of an adverse event, but rather in identifying those who are most at risk and most likely to respond positively to a given intervention – i.e. to be ‘impactable’.  The combination of risk stratification, impactability modelling and actuarial variability analysis can not only help to target the most promising patients for medical management, but also support the improvement of resource allocation across a local health economy.

Key objectives:

The research and output of the working party has been planned in phases.  Initially, a range of topics related to impactability had been explored, including:

  • definition of impactability modelling – (e.g. analysis which quantifies the extent to which a defined population cohort is predicted to respond to a given healthcare intervention under specified circumstances)
  • exploring an understanding of different approaches to measuring and modelling impactability including the skills, tools and techniques needed to achieve each approach
  • the advantages and disadvantages of various potential approaches (both data-driven and those based on empirical evidence)
  • consideration of the interactions between impactability and population risk management
  • issues of public perception, inequality and ethics.

Impactability Modelling Report (June 2020)

The Working Party published its first report in June 2020: “Impactability Modelling for Population Health Management: A review of current concepts and practices”.  Here is the press release:

Population Health Management aims to achieve the best mix of health outcomes across the diverse members of a population, given the mix of services available in the health and care system.  

In 2019, the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) identified PHM as a key component of its Long Term Plan.  The actuarial profession is well-placed to support the demographic, risk modelling and analytical capability required to successfully embed PHM, whilst being highly focused on the public interest and ethical issues that can arise from such techniques.

Now in June 2020, in the midst of a global health pandemic, PHM approaches are more important than ever as health systems across the world deal with Covid-19, both the disease itself and also the many consequences of the societal changes that are taking place in response.

The working party is exploring a range of facets around PHM where actuarial thinking can add value and this first report looks at impactability modelling, a key pillar of successful PHM implementation.  Impactability modelling covers a range of approaches that leverage data analysis and the application of statistical techniques to support PHM aims.  The report focuses on developing a common technical and practical understanding of the topic, including:

•     Defining impactability and impactability modelling

•     Practical challenges and considerations

•     Potential approaches and models

•     Ethics, patients and the Public

Read the full report


Impactability Modelling Framework with Pre-Diabetes Example Report (September 2021)

As we emerge from the shadow of Covid, there is evidence that more people are now at higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes compared to before the pandemic.

In our latest paper, we describe the components of a framework that can guide health data analysts in developing their own impactability modelling approaches for their at-risk populations.

These approaches can support health professionals in identifying people who may benefit from interventions such as the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme.

Read the full report


Key outputs to date:

Chair: Alpesh Shah

  • Membership: 14
  • Established: 2018

Related documents

Contact Details

If you want more information about this research working party please contact the Communities Team.

Filter or search events

Start date
E.g., 09/08/2022
End date
E.g., 09/08/2022

Events calendar

  • Spaces available

    This session will focus on the transformation roadmap of the healthcare sector in KSA and the role of actuarial capabilities in enhancing its evolution to the desired end stage as per the objectives of the Vision 2030. The discussion will focus how the system has evolved so far and shed light on  the expected future changes. Through examining  the transformation, we will highlight how the sector is and can use actuarial  expertise to not only assist with this transformation but also use basic actuarial principles to identify the key risks and their respective mitigation strategies.

  • Spaces available

    The purpose of this research paper is to explore enterprise risk management lessons which can be learnt from the Covid-19 pandemic in preparation for potential future pandemics as well as other “gray rhino” or “black swan” events. This paper is not intended to be an all-encompassing solution to the issues presented by Covid-19; rather, the content has been provided to help drive discussions regarding how risk management processes may need to evolve in line with the dynamic nature of the underlying risks that they sometimes need to capture.

  • Spaces available

    This session is for new candidates and existing candidates where we will be discussing the practical steps you need to take leading up your exam and on the day. We will be discussing how to testing the online exam platform, downloading and uploading your paper and key information from the Exam Handbook.

    The exam webinar is for candidates, new to IFoA exams and returning candidates, sitting in the September 2022 exam session.

  • Spaces available

    This webinar will cover:

    • Some background on the risks of misselling in an ESG context, including the DWS case

    • Achieving positive impact is a strong antidote to the risks of greenwashing or ESG misselling, however this risks having a tension with fiduciary responsibilities

    • This tension can be resolved with a concept called Universal Ownership

    • Under Universal ownership, investors have an appetite to make a loss in order to achieve positive impact, and yet still have no compromise on their fiduciary responsibilities

  • Spaces available

    In the UK, the idea of collective defined contribution (CDC) pension schemes is gaining more attention with the launch of the Royal Mail CDC scheme, the first of its kind in the UK. Our recent research on CDC plans investigates the sources of the putative benefits of CDC schemes: the smoothing of pensions for members.  Using an attribution analysis to burrow into the scheme design, the reason for the smoothing of members' pensions is explained and understood.

  • Spaces available

    The IFoA's Infrastructure Working Party, led by Chris Lewin, will present its new introductory guide to infrastructure investment, which will be published on the IFoA web-site prior to the webinar.   Those readers whose institutions have already taken the plunge into infrastructure will know that it is a highly complex and diverse field of activity.   This guide does not explore all the matters which investors take into account, but it does discuss many of the more important points, including the risks and past returns, benchmarking, and ESG and SDG considerations.    Attendees will be invi

  • Social Care Agenda

    11 October 2022

    Spaces available

    Social care reform has long been on the to-do list for successive governments over the last two decades. In February, the government’s proposed reforms to adult social care [including cap on care costs] was published. Against this backdrop of funding promise and rising National Insurance taxation, in this session we will debate the resilience of these new proposals, the impact of future demand for care services and what role for the insurance industry and the important role it has played in long-term care funding in other countries where public-private partnership works.

  • Spaces available

    Health contributes to happiness at the personal, family, community and societal level.  Health, importantly underpins all our economic security. This talk will explore the drivers of our health, the measurement of health and the steps we can take to improve health – most of which lie outside the NHS.

  • GIRO Conference 2022

    ACC Liverpool  
    21 November 2022 - 23 November 2022
    Spaces available

    We are delighted to announce the return of GIRO as an in-person conference, giving you an opportunity to connect with actuaries in your practice area. Join leading experts to discuss key issues, emerging ideas, and new research across the General Insurance sector.

  • Life Conference 2022

    ACC Liverpool Kings Dock Liverpool Waterfront Liverpool Merseyside L3 4FP
    23 November 2022 - 25 November 2022
    Spaces available

    Life Conference returns as an in-person conference in 2022, giving you an opportunity to connect with your peers and fellow actuaries in your sector, in person. You will also hear leading experts discuss key issues, emerging ideas, and new research across the Life insurance sector.

  • Spaces available

    Mortality and morbidity risk varies by variables such as age, sex and smoking. In traditional actuarial experience analysis, these variables, and certain combinations thereof can be explored. However, with the wealth of data now available it is becoming increasingly challenging to identify the key drivers of experience and account for the interaction between different variables. A univariate approach often compares apples and pears, for example males are more likely to smoke and have larger policies than females. Likewise, variable interactions are missed unless specifically included.