As the impact of the developing coronavirus pandemic begins to surface, healthcare providers continue to look for ways to administer effective population health for a more informed and healthy community. When evaluating the circumstances of each patient, it becomes clear that some individuals, depending on physical location and other factors, are better positioned than others to face challenges related to health. But why? And how can pharmacies help?
A critical component of this identified health disparity is a set of conditions known as social determinants of health (SDOH). Shaped by the uneven distribution of money, education, and resources, SDOH plays a crucial role in population health per the World Health Organization (WHO). With the onset of challenges caused by the developing coronavirus pandemic, there is perhaps no better time to examine these factors to improve the effectiveness of patient care.
Here are the top four SDOH, according to WHO:
1. Employment conditions
It is not surprising that research has found different jobs can greatly affect health. From stress to income, our jobs shape a good deal of how we live each day.
2. Social exclusion
Certain groups of people are excluded from their communities. In some instances, social exclusion is systematic. When people are excluded, it can be harder for them to access important resources that affect their financial, and overall health.
3. Early child development
The opportunities afforded to children play a crucial role later in life. In fact, healthy early childhood development strongly influences lifelong well-being across many conditions including obesity, mental health, heart disease, and education.
4. Health systems
Not all care is created equal, and some people have access to better health systems. Health systems can vary greatly from state-to-state, and even community-to-community.
With some of these critical factors in mind, how can you – the community’s most accessible care provider – have an impact? Obtaining insight into a patient’s unique SDOH can help pharmacists make better, more informed decisions for optimized care. That is why PrescribeWellness now offers the ability to track SDOH within its eCare solution. Through the PrescribeWellness software, community pharmacists can now document and address SDOH such as:
- Difficulty obtaining food
- Difficulty coping
- Feeling lonely
- Financial problems
- Food insecurity
- Lacks emotional support
- Social exclusion
- Unsatisfactory living conditions
Understanding these factors allows pharmacists to connect patients with tailored support for better outcomes. With enhanced insight, patients can be provided critical resources from local organizations like food banks, housing support services, and mental health groups.
PrescribeWellness remains dedicated to providing community pharmacists opportunities to meet their patients where they are, especially during critical times, such as the developing COVID-19 pandemic. Through insight afforded by SDOH, available through the PrescribeWellness software, pharmacists can take action to provide optimized care throughout the community. Connect with us today to learn more about PrescribeWellness’ community pharmacy solutions.