Implementation considerations for social determinants of health screening and referral interventions
From pediatrics to geriatrics, addressing patients’ social determinants of health is becoming an integral component of health care delivery. The National Academy of Sciences has endorsed screening for unmet social needs, while payers, including Medicaid, have incentivized it in states such as Massachusetts and Oregon. In Congress, a bill was recently introduced with bipartisan support that would provide planning grants for public sector social determinants of health accelerator programs and establish an interagency technical advisory board. Social determinants of health research conducted within the medical setting has increased exponentially in the past 5 years. With greater recognition of the influence of social risk on health and emphasis on providing value-based care, addressing patients’ unmet social needs is clearly having its day in the sun. Yet, despite attention from politicians and the clinical, policy, and research realms, 2 fundamental questions remain: what should social determinants of health screening and referral interventions look like, and do they ultimately improve patients’ health and well-being?
Garg A, Byhoff E, Wexler MG. Implementation considerations for social determinants of health screening and referral interventions. JAMA Netw Open. 2020;3(3):e200693. PMID: 32154884. DOI: 10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.0693.