Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Who's Leading the Leading Health Indicators? Social Determinants of Health

Healthypeople.gov: Leading Health Indicators Monthly Bulletin

Social determinants of health (SDOH) are the conditions in the environment in which people are born, grow, live, work, and age that may impact their health. SDOH are often a strong predictor for health inequities—the unfair and avoidable differences in health status seen within and between communities. They include factors like socioeconomic status, education, the physical environment, employment, and social support networks, as well as access to health care.

The Healthy People 2020 SDOH framework highlights 5 key domains: economic stability, education, health and health care, neighborhood and built environment, and social and community context. The selection of social determinants as a Leading Health Indicator recognizes the critical role of home, school, workplace, neighborhood, and community in improving health. The Social Determinants LHI encourages improvements in education and high school graduation rates. Children born to parents who have not completed high school are more likely to live in an environment with barriers to health. Additionally, low education levels have been linked with poor health, more stress, and lower self-confidence.

Increasing levels of education, including academic success and achievement, are associated with longer life expectancy, improved health and quality of life, and adoption of health-promoting behaviors like getting regular physical activity, not smoking, and going for routine checkups and recommended screenings.

Find out more and view the infographic here.

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