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Defining Health Equity

Below are terms and phrases to better understand the mission and impact the DC Department of Health Office of Health Equity’s will have on the residents of the District of Columbia.
 
HEALTH EQUITY:  
  • IS  the “attainment of the highest level of health for all people. Achieving health equity requires valuing everyone equally with focused and ongoing societal efforts to address avoidable inequalities, historical and contemporary injustices, and the elimination of health and health care disparities.”
HEALTH DISPARITY:  
  • IS  “a particular type of health difference that is closely linked with social, economic, and/or environmental disadvantage. Health disparities adversely affect groups of people who have systematically experienced greater obstacles to health based on their racial or ethnic group; religion; socioeconomic status; gender; age; mental health; cognitive, sensory, or physical disability; sexual orientation or gender identity; geographic location; or other characteristics historically linked to discrimination or exclusion.”
Sources: CDC Healthy People 2020, Dec 2010  --http://www.healthypeople.gov/2020/about/disparitiesAbout.aspx
 
 SOCIAL DETERMINANTS OF HEALTH: 
  • ARE  “the conditions in which people are born, grow, work, live, and age, and the wider set of forces and systems shaping the conditions of daily life. These forces and systems include economic policies and systems, development agendas, social norms, social policies and political systems”
Sources: World Health Organization
 
HEALTH IN ALL POLICIES (HiAP)
  • IS  “a collaborative approach that integrates and articulates health considerations into policymaking across sectors to improve the health of all communities and people. HiAP recognizes that health is created by a multitude of factors beyond healthcare and, in many cases, beyond the scope of traditional public health activities. The HiAP approach provides one way to achieve the National Prevention Strategy and Healthy People 2020 goals and enhance the potential for state, territorial, and local health departments to improve health outcomes. The HiAP approach may also be effective in identifying gaps in evidence and achieving health equity”.
Sources: CDC