Social Determinants of Health: Economic Stability






Social Determinants of Health: Economic Stability



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Social Determinants of Health: Economic Stability

Picture Depicting a Social Determinant Issue

An example of a social determinant issue in my community, which impacts the quality of life and healthcare is economic stability. The picture in figure 1 below depicts this issue. One can see a homeless person lying on the sidewalk and covered in a blanket. A lady is passing by with trendy clothes and a smartphone as she walks past a boutique. She appears relatively well-off financially. It is clear that out of these two individuals, the rich woman has a better ability to afford healthcare services compared to the poor homeless person. More so, she can afford a lifestyle that may offer a positive influence on her health compared to the homeless individual. Hence, the economic stability of the lady makes her predisposed to better health outcomes while the poverty of the homeless person makes him/her predisposed to negative health outcomes.

Figure 1: Social Determinant of Health – Economic Stability

Perspective Regarding the Social Determinant Issue

According to Semega et al. (2019), “in the United States, 1 in 10 people live in poverty, and many people cannot afford things like healthy foods, health care, and housing” (p. 1). This is because economic stability is essential to affording ideal lifestyle choices and paying for the necessary high-quality medical services, which keep people healthy. A person who has a well-paying and steady source of income can afford things like housing stability and food security. These are crucial factors that facilitate optimum living conditions. Also, he/she can have savings to cater to healthcare emergencies or the management of chronic conditions.

In my community, individuals with steady sources of income have a lower likelihood of living in poverty and a high chance of being healthy. However, many individuals find it challenging to seek and keep a job. For instance, those with disabilities or chronic conditions tend to be limited in what they can do and miss out on many job opportunities. Furthermore, even those who get jobs, most of them are low-paying resulting in individuals who have limited funds to afford items required to stay healthy (Horwitz et al., 2020). The current Covid-19 pandemic has shown how people with lower incomes are more predisposed to getting the disease and dying from it due to reasons such as crowded accommodation, obesity, and limited access to healthcare (Singu et al., 2020). In this context, the role I might play in changing this social determinant in my community is to lobby the lawmakers to come up with policies that aid low-income people in paying for healthcare, housing, education, and food since these are factors, which can greatly lower poverty and enhance health and overall wellbeing.

140-Character Tweet that Describes the Social Determinant of Health

Lawmakers should create policies to bridge the rich-poor divide and subsidize healthcare costs of people from low socioeconomic backgrounds.



Horwitz, L. I., Chang, C., Arcilla, H. N., & Knickman, J. R. (2020). Quantifying health systems’ investment in social determinants of health, by sector, 2017–19: Study analyzes the extent to which US health systems are directly investing in community programs to address social determinants of health. Health Affairs39(2), 192-198.

Semega, J., Kollar, M., Creamer, J., Mohanty, A. (2019). Income and Poverty in the United States. United States Census Bureau.

Singu, S., Acharya, A., Challagundla, K., & Byrareddy, S. N. (2020). Impact of social determinants of health on the emerging COVID-19 pandemic in the United States. Frontiers in Public Health8, 406.

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