Social Determinants

What Are Social Determinants of Health?

Social determinants of health are conditions in the environment where people live, learn, work, play, worship and age.  Put more simply, the social environment in which we live can influence our health outcomes.

Examples include:   

  • Safe housing you can afford
  • Local food markets
  • Access to health care services
  • Education and job training
  • Availability of community-based resources
  • Transportation options
  • Public safety
  • Social support
  • Language/literacy
  • Culture
  • Access to cell phones, the Internet, or social media
  • Poverty and stress

Below are the main categories of the Social Determinants of Health:

Social Determinants of Health diagram

According to the World Health Organization, the poorest of the poor, around the world, have the worst health.  Health outcomes are determined by more than biological factors or access to quality health care. Social determinants of health acknowledge that the environmental conditions present in a community can have a significant impact on the health of our Members.

Resources that improve the quality of life can have a significant influence on population health outcomes. Examples of these resources include safe and affordable housing, access to education, public safety, availability of healthy foods, local emergency/health services, and environments free of life-threatening toxins. (Healthy People 2020)

Listening Meetings

The regional organization will be conducting a series of “Listening Meetings” in communities across this region to gather feedback from the community about which social determinants Members and Stakeholders feel have the greatest impact on the quality of life and explore community supports to address them. Please check back for dates, times and locations of these “Listening Meetings.”

Following the “Listening Meetings,” the regional organization will convene ongoing Stakeholder meetings to continue the discussion related to Social Determinants of Health, continue to gather feedback, and provide updates regarding projects and partnerships addressing Social Determinants in your community.  Please check back for dates, times and locations of these “Listening Meetings.”

Click on Social Determinants of Health for more information.