WASHINGTON, March 15, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Addressing the social determinants of health (SDOH) is well recognized as a paramount issue in the health of communities. Academic health centers, with their tri-partite mission of biomedical research, health professions education, and delivery of state-of-the-art healthcare regionally, nationally, and worldwide, are increasingly applying ideas and practices that include SDOH in their programs.
"Because academic health centers have unique capabilities, they naturally lead the effort to address all aspects of health and well-being," said Steven A. Wartman, MD, PhD, president of the Association of Academic Health Centers (AAHC).
Recognizing the importance and immediacy of addressing SDOH, AAHC's annual Global Issues Forum this year will bring together academic health center and health policy leaders from around the world to share and discuss solutions to the formidable challenges presented by this seminal issue. Meeting in Washington, DC, April 18-19, the leaders will address strategies, programs, and models of best practices that they can bring to their own institutions and communities to improve individual and population health. The meeting will also include keynote speakers: Sir Michael G. Marmot, MBBS, MPH, PhD, FRCP, FFPHM, FMedSci, Director of the UCL Institute of Health Equity, President for the World Medical Association (UK), and Jo Ivey Boufford, MD, President of The New York Academy of Medicine.
According to WhereHealthBegins.org, an individual's health prospects are shaped by a variety of factors beyond what has been inherited (genetics) and the medical care that is received. These factors include the social determinants of health and consist of an individual's social circumstances, environment, and behavioral patterns.
"Academic health centers can provide the leadership to build local, regional, and international partnerships that can effectively impact and improve population health," said Wartman, adding "the 2016 AAHC Global Issues Forum will afford a positive and lasting step toward that goal."
AAHC is a non-profit association dedicated to advancing health and well-being through the vigorous leadership of academic health centers.
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Source:Association of Academic Health Centers