why is health equity important?

After all, it is difficult to be in good health without access to good jobs and schools and safe, affordable housing. Research by the Urban Institute shows that young adults with health problems who can find work in the mainstream economy are less productive and generate higher health care costs for businesses than those without health problems (Woolf et al. Health disparities, or inequities, are types of unfair health disparities closely related to social, economic or environmental disadvantages that negatively affect groups of people. These investments are intended to "transform the lives and places of disinvested people" (The Housing Fund, 201 , and at their core are investments to create opportunities for all to achieve optimal health.

Simply increasing the availability of health services does not necessarily reduce health care disparities. The multiple determinants of health and how they affect health equity are discussed below. The RWJF defines a culture of health broadly "as a culture in which good health and well-being flourish across geographic, demographic and social sectors; the promotion of healthy and equitable communities guides public and private decision-making; and everyone has the opportunity to make choices that lead to healthy lifestyles (RWJF, n. This report focuses on what communities can do to promote health equity and on the broader policy context and stakeholder contributions that can support communities.

The Commission on Social Determinants of Health, together with the World Health Organization, published this report to address the social determinants of health with the goal of achieving health equity. By showcasing many creative, forward-looking and bold community-led solutions to achieve health equity, this report aims to provide a new narrative on health in the United States. A scientific panel highlights nine communities working to advance health equity and what it takes to succeed. Chapter 4 discusses the role and capacity of communities to promote health equity and explains the broader context in which communities are situated, as well as the types of evidence needed to support them.

One way to address this has been through increased training in cultural humility, which encourages health professionals to develop more honest, trustworthy and culturally sensitive relationships with the people they serve. Health inequities, defined by the World Health Organisation as systematic differences in the health status of different population groups, have been in the national spotlight for years, which is not surprising given that US health systems are paying attention to disparities in the quality of their care and seeking remedies as health care costs rise and consumers demand action.

Erika Ossenfort
Erika Ossenfort

Hipster-friendly food fan. Professional pop culture advocate. Freelance internet ninja. Devoted web fan. Extreme music evangelist.

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