Key Health Determinants
Did you know that the United States has a higher rate of infant mortality than Japan (CIA, n.d.)? Or, as Dr. Beilenson states in this week’s media presentation, that “your zip code that you live in makes more difference in your health and well-being than the genetic code that you’re born with?” What causes these differences in health outcomes?
To effectively develop policies and programs to improve population health, it is useful to use a framework to guide the process. Different organizations and governmental agencies (for example, Healthy People 2020) have created a variety of such frameworks, which establish measures for assessing population health. These measures frequently are derived from the examination of epidemiologic data, which include key measures of population health such as mortality, morbidity, life expectancy, etc. Within each measure are a variety of progress indicators that use epidemiologic data to assess improvement or change.
For this Discussion, you will apply a framework developed by Kindig, Asada, and Booske (2008) to a population health issue of interest to you. This framework includes five key health determinants that should be considered when developing policies and programs to improve population health: access to health care, individual behavior, social environment, physical environment, and genetics.
Post by Day 3 a summary of how the five population health determinants (access to health care, individual behavior, social environment, physical environment, and genetics) affect your selected health issue, and which determinants you think are most impactful for that particular issue and why. Explain how epidemiologic data supports the significance of your issue, and explain how this data has been used in designing population health measures and policy initiatives.
Central Intelligence Agency. (n.d.) The world factbook. Retrieved from https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/rankorder/2091rank.html
Kindig, D., Asada, Y., & Booske, B. (2008). A population health framework for setting national and state health goals. JAMA, 299(17), 2081–2083. doi: 10.1001/jama.299.17.2081
This article provides a valuable foundation in understanding the terminology of population health. Although written in 2007, the information in this article is very pertinent to the topics discussed this week.
Using a framework to craft policy and programs can help ensure that outcomes are measurable. The authors of this article note how some of the overarching goals of Healthy People 2010 were not measurable. They suggest a framework for developing more measurable goals for Healthy People 2020.
The CDC website provides health statistics gathered using epidemiologic methods. Explore the health statistics for your state or for a health problem of interest to you.
Healthy People 2020 uses the four foundational measures presented at this website to monitor the health of the American population.
Australia uses epidemiologic data to establish its health priorities. Review the information presented at this website, and consider how the United States sets its health priorities.
This overview of Healthy People 2020 provides a description of goals of this program, along with indicators used to assess the health of the United States.
This site contains a wide variety of information and resources dealing with the Healthy People 2020 goals, as well as information on how to implement the objectives.
This website provides a definition of population health and health determinants. It also examines how health policy can influence determinants of health.
Note: The approximate length of this media piece is 13 minutes.
Please proceed to the Discussion.
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