This weekly bulletin is provided by The Root Cause Coalition to provide news and information on the social determinants of health, as well as a snapshot of the Coalition’s activities.
The Root Cause Coalition provides this weekly update to draw attention to our members’ social determinants of health (SDoH) activities, SDoH in the news and the ever-growing challenges faced by our most vulnerable communities. We encourage you to share SDoH-focused research, events and other resources with us so that we can promote it through our TRCC network. Our aim is to foster an exchange of information that is helpful to others so that those most in need - on whose behalf we work each day - can continue to receive information, access and services to improve health and quality of life. If you have information to share, please email us: firstname.lastname@example.org
TRCC News and Upcoming Events
TRCC is accepting request for proposals for the 7th Annual National Summit on the Social Determinants of Health, to be held in Minneapolis, Minnesota from October 4th-6th. With this year's theme, Achieving Health Equity: What Are You Prepared To Do? we are excited to welcome community and health care leaders from across the nation to discuss strategies and best practices in achieving health equity. Submit your proposal here. Successful applicants will be notified in early spring.
We welcome new sponsors to join us in Minneapolis, Minnesota as a Sponsor for the 7th Annual National Summit. This year’s prospectus has been carefully curated to provide sponsors with unique opportunities that enhance professional relationships and can help reinforce sponsors as a leader in the health equity space. Please reach out to Madison Flores at email@example.com for more information.
The Coalition recently announced the launch of the Equity Legislation Monitor (ELM), a tool developed by our Board, TRCC’s Advocacy Committee and staff to identify priority issues – and related legislation - affecting health disparities. TRCC will use the ELM to continuously provide relevant information on key equity and SDoH issues throughout the year. This tool will be updated with research, news and legislation, released in real-time, and will provide resources and information on seven priority areas: digital equity; diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice; environment and climate change; housing; maternal health; nutrition and food security, and payment models. For further information about the ELM, please contact Tom Dorney at firstname.lastname@example.org or Hannah Miller at email@example.com
Social Determinants in the News
Disaggregating Asian American and Pacific Islander Health Data: Opportunities to Advance Health Equity This article explores the value of collecting and reporting on disaggregated Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) data to better understand and address health disparities among AAPI people. This is especially necessary because even though AAPI people consist of more than 50 ethnicities their health data is often aggregated as one race. The author highlights the need to address these disparities given the rise of anti-AAPI violence and discrimination since the COVID pandemic and shares how policymakers can improve data collection in surveys, public benefit applications and medical claims data. One health system's work to address food and nutrition security This article highlights the opening of Allegheny Health Network’s Healthy Food Center, a food pharmacy program started by the health system to provide healthy, plant-based meals to patients struggling with food and nutrition security. Physician training to screen for housing, food security and other SDoH is provided; they also provide referrals to the food pharmacy as well as partner organizations working with high-risk populations. Valuing the cross-sector benefits from improving youth health to drive investment in place-based preventive interventions in the U.S.: A simulation modeling study A new study utilizes economic modeling to estimate the long-term benefits of improving population health indicators in childhood. Results showed that decreasing the incidence of adolescent health and academic challenges can offer significant estimated savings per prevented incidence of substance use onset by age 18 and per promoted incidence of high school graduation. The authors recommend the expansion of place-based strategies to improve children's healthy development, boosting lifetime health and economic outcomes. How training can advance health equity and cultural humility This article showcases the steps one hospital system is taking to ensure healthcare providers are able to provide the best care to patients, regardless of their race, culture, ability to pay and other social determinants. All physicians and advanced practice providers at LMH Health will be required to take inclusion, diversity and equity (ID&E) trainings as a part of their annual education requirements. Educational sessions will cover implicit bias, health disparities, cultural humility and inclusive workplaces with the goal of creating awareness and addressing inequities at the front lines of patient care.
SDOH Advocacy Update
H.R.6612 - Advancing Maternal Health Equity Under Medicaid Act This bill was introduced by Representative Kathy Manning [D-NC] to address the maternal mortality crisis in the U.S. that disproportionately affects Black, Indigenous and minority communities. The bill would incentivize states to increase their spending on maternal health services under Medicaid by raising the federal reimbursement rate for states that do so. Funding would be used to increase access to telehealth assistance, home visits and mental or behavioral health care during prenatal and postpartum periods. The bill was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.
S.3641 - Part-Time Worker Bill of Rights Act This bill was introduced by Senator Elizabeth Warren [D-MA] to promote economic security by expanding access to federal family and medical leave to part-time workers. The bill would eliminate the current hours of service requirement in the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). It would also guarantee that any employee who works for an employer covered by the FMLA and has been employed for at least 12 months, regardless of the number of hours worked per week, would be eligible for leave. The bill would also improve pension and retirement coverage for part-time workers and would prevent employers from discriminating against part-time employees with respect to compensation, promotions, eligibility to accrue time off and notice of new work hours. The bill was referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.
H.R.6492 - Climate Resilience Workforce Act The bill, introduced by Representative Pramila Jayapal, would establish an Office of Climate Resilience and Climate Resilience Equity Advisory Board within the White House to make recommendations that incorporate the knowledge, experiences and priorities of frontline communities. The bill would allocate funding for new and existing workforce development programs that address employment within climate resilience sectors while also removing barriers to employment in these jobs based on immigration status and prior involvement with the criminal justice system. The head of each Federal agency would be required to share a progress report on the development of agency-specific climate action plans; grants would be available for regional, state, local and community-based climate resilience action plans. The bill was referred to the Committee on Education and Labor, and in addition to the Committees on Energy and Commerce, Oversight and Reform, the Judiciary, Transportation and Infrastructure, Ways and Means, Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Financial Services.
H.R.801 - Expanding Medical Education Act Introduced by Representative Jim Acosta [D-CA], this bill would increase access to care through grant funding. Grants could go to colleges and universities to establish or expand medical schools in medically underserved communities, health professional shortage areas or at minority-serving institutions, including Historically Black Colleges and Universities. They would be administered by Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) and could be used for the planning and construction of new medical schools or branch campuses in areas where no other school is based. Funding could also be used for hiring diverse faculty and staff along with the recruitment, enrollment and retention of students, including those from disadvantaged backgrounds, underrepresented racial and ethnic minorities, students from rural and underserved areas, low-income students and first-generation college students. The bill was referred to the Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health.
The Root Cause Coalition Member Spotlight
Registration is now open for the 2022 Accelerating Health Equity Conference, an in-person event in Cleveland, OH. The conference is a joint effort by the AHA Community Health Improvement network and the Institute for Diversity and Health Equity. Their shared mission is to close health equity gaps by building strategic hospital-community partnerships and developing and sustaining diversity and inclusion across the field. Register here today!