SDoH in the News
STAT: (10/1) – Both biological and socioeconomic factors make individuals with diabetes more likely to suffer severe illness and death should they contract COVID-19. The pandemic has intertwined with and exposed two widespread problems: diabetes and disparities triggered by social determinants of health.
Politico Pro (Subscription): (9/30) – Achieving economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic could take years and could continue to impact the nation’s most vulnerable communities. Social and public services are facing budget delays or cuts as a result of the economic crisis, which has impacted housing, food, public safety, and other social needs among vulnerable communities.
National Institutes of Health: (9/30) – The NIH awarded nearly $234 million to help improve COVID-19 testing in underserved and vulnerable communities affected by coronavirus, funding 32 institutions to better understand coronavirus testing patterns and reduce testing disparities.
Bloomberg Law: (9/29) – While state health programs are increasingly being called upon to address social needs that have worsened the impact of the pandemic on marginalized communities, tightening state budgets could deter Medicaid’s focus on social needs.
Medical Economics: (9/29) – As more Americans face increased social needs, the health care system needs to develop sustainable partnerships with community-based organizations to address the long-term impact of the coronavirus pandemic on communities.
Medium: (9/29) – Build Healthy Places highlighted how the Better Health through Housing demonstration in Chicago provided the blueprint to expand a $13 million regional funding pool is helping chronically homeless people get off the street and into permanent homes and supportive housing.
UnitedHealthcare: (9/29) – UnitedHealthcare announced a $1 million contribution to Catholic Charities of Southern Nevada over the next three years to provide vital support to their Meals on Wheels Program and Renewing Hope Program for Men. CCSN will use the funds to provide up to 300 seniors with food deliveries, decreasing the current wait list, and increasing food security across Clark County.
Health Affairs: (9/29) – Despite the prevalent belief that tuberculosis is a disease of the past in the U.S., certain U.S. populations like Pacific Islanders, Native Americans and homeless people are increasingly prone to tuberculosis outbreaks The COVID-19 pandemic has set global tuberculosis elimination efforts back an estimated five to eight years, necessitating investments in meals as medicine and extending tuberculosis elimination work upstream by focusing on prevention by addressing socioeconomic factors such as undernutrition.
The Hill: (9/29) – Access to healthy foods is restricted by food deserts, food swamps, and inability to buy groceries due to financial insecurity or due to the coronavirus pandemic. This op-ed by a provider at Massachusetts General Hospital provides an overview of how health systems are well positioned to play a strategic part in fixing food insecurity due to their proximity to communities, central responsibility in treating chronic disease, and participation in value-based payment models that incentivize addressing patients’ health-related social needs such as food.
RISE Health: (9/29) – Looking at recent headlines concerning social determinants of health, RISE compiled articles detailing how the COVID-19 pandemic has led loneliness rates to double in adults, placed disproportionate financial strain on Latino, Black, and Native American households, and exacerbated other racial disparities.
Patient Engagement HIT: (9/28) – In this episode of the Healthcare Strategies Podcast, Julie Smithwich from the Center for Community Health Alignment discusses the importance of understanding how injustices have created health disparities in order to build a future with health equity.
WMDT: (9/28) – Highmark Delaware is giving $1 million for its BluePrints for the Community Grant program and the Delaware Community Foundation to study and balance social determinants of health, like economic and financial instability, access to education, and transportation.
The Atlantic: (9/24) – Zeke Emanuel and Risa Lavizzo-Mourey note that the health care system is responsible for about 10 to 15 percent of preventable mortality in the U.S., while socioeconomic factors have a greater overall impact on mortality. In this op-ed, the authors present five concrete changes to public policy, industry practices, and medical education that could address and improve health inequities.
mHealthIntelligence: (9/24) – A study by the Yale School of Medicine found that underserved communities are likely to use mHealth tools to gather data and participate in studies if those tools are well-designed and aided by community health outreach, highlighting to opportunity to bolster mHealth application usage among low-income populations by partnering with community organizations, hiring community health workers to facilitate engagement, and increasing hot spots to free high-speed WiFi to improve health and health outcomes.
Bloomberg: (9/23) – The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a vast drop in critical early child care for low-income children, with vaccinations for children under age 2 down 22 percent, dental services decreased by 69 percent, and child screening services for early detection of conditions like autism declining 44 percent over the last year, according to CMS.
HHS: (9/22) – To improve maternal health outcomes, HHS awarded approximately $341 million in funding to 55 states, territories, and nonprofit organizations through the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) Program and $16 million in funding to the State Maternal Health Innovation (STATE MHI) Program.