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Health Equity, Disparities and Social Determinants

Raised hands of different heights and colors

Throughout the United States and the world, the burden of poor health is borne by marginalized, stigmatized and discriminated segments of the population (e.g. based on race, ethnicity, sex, sexual identity, age, disability and socioeconomic status). Social and structural factors such as poverty, education, health care access, neighborhood environment, and stigma and racism, are large drivers of disparities and health inequities that these groups experience. At the Yale School of Public Health, researchers work to narrow health inequities through basic science, epidemiology, public policy and development of interventions.

Our work includes:

  • Understanding underlying mechanisms and the interplay between risk factors that drive health inequity
  • Effects of racism and stigma on health
  • Ways that neighborhoods shape health
  • Role of housing as a social determinant of health
  • Influence of social networks and capital on health
  • Social and structural interventions to ameliorate disparities in chronic diseases
  • Developing evidence-based models to narrow health and healthcare inequalities, with a particular focus on racial and ethnic minority populations
  • Effects of public policy on access to care
  • Quality and efficiency in healthcare systems

Practice-based research and initiatives

Through the initiatives of the Prevention Research Center, Community Alliance for Research and Engagement, and the Yale Cancer Center’s Center for Community Engagement and Health Equity, YSPH leverages research partnerships to identify and implement equitable solutions in our local community.

CARE’s 13 year focus has centered on health disparities in New Haven and have led a variety of initiatives to address disparities over the year. Most recently, CARE is the recipient of the CDC’s Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health (REACH) grant.

Through REACH, CARE plans and carries out local, culturally appropriate programs to address a wide range of health issues among Black and Hispanic/Latino residents of New Haven. Interventions are focused on nutrition, physical activity, and community-clinical linkages while providing opportunities for our partners and the community members to inform its research, policy, and practice.

Global initiatives led by centers such as the Yale Institute for Global Health, Center for Interdisciplinary Research on AIDS, Center for Methods in Implementation Science and others infuse under-funded health infrastructures and communities with action-oriented research.