Social determinants are “the conditions in which people are born, grow, live, work and age that shape health.” The systemic disparities in these conditions lead to health inequities between individuals and communities. The following resources explore the social determinants of health as well as how the framework can be used to understand and address health disparities.
DEFINITIONS: Social Determinants of Health
The World Health Organization (WHO) defines the social determinants of health and provides nine key concepts. Each example also includes further reading on each concept.VIEW RESOURCE
REPORT: Beyond Health Care: The Role of Social Determinants in Promoting Health and Health Equity
This Kaiser Family Foundation report includes graphics outlining the social determinants of health and the different factors associated with them. The report also provides examples of programs working to address health inequities through social determinants of health efforts.VIEW RESOURCE
SERIES: Unnatural Causes
This document outlines 10 major factors that impact health outcomes and gives background on the mechanisms that lead to inequitable outcomes. It accompanies a seven-part PBS series, Unnatural Causes, on the racial and socioeconomic inequities in health.DOWNLOAD RESOURCE
FRAMEWORK: Healthy People 2020 — SDOH
Healthy People 2020 is a national campaign with a set of objectives to improve the health of the U.S over a 10 year period. Increasing “public awareness and understanding of the determinants of health, disease, and disability and the opportunities for progress” is a central part of the mission of Healthy People 2020. This section describes how the initiative understands the social determinants of health.
More on Healthy People 2020 — Spotlight on Health Webinar: Social Determinants of Health
ARTICLE: Why America’s Black Mothers and Babies Are in a Life-or-Death Crisis
This article from the The New York Times investigates the deadly gap in care for Black mothers in America. It looks at stories of the personal toll of unequal care on women and families, as well as research and national data on the issue.