Social Determinants of Health

Closing the Loop: Payers Address Social Drivers of Health - 03/15/2024

Houston family physician Lindsay Botsford, MD, received a call in late February from a Medicare patient with shingles. She prescribed an antiviral medication to treat the infection – and then the real work began.

Healthy Life Requires More Than Just Good Health Care, Survey Says - 08/31/2023

People need good health care, but 57% of Texans know that isn’t everything when it comes to being healthy. Instead, factors like where people live, work, and relax have a bigger impact, most Texans told a recent survey.

Community Connections: TMA’s Council on Health Promotion Helps Physicians Boost Hometown Health - 04/03/2023

The Texas Medical Association's Council on Health Promotion oversees the organization's outreach programs and helps develop new ones. These programs are used by county medical societies, alliance chapters, medical student groups, and medical practices to improve community health.

Healthy Determination: Texas Physicians are Finding Better Ways to Address Their Patients’ Social Determinants of Health - 03/27/2023

Austin pediatrician Sandra Frasser, MD, learned early in her medical career that many of the biggest health problems patients face cannot be fixed by a trip to the doctor’s office.

Making a Comeback: Texas Leads the Nation in Congenital Syphilis - 07/29/2022

Texas leads the nation in congenital syphilis cases, and physicians are key to bringing both syphilis and congenital syphilis under control again.

How to Start a Medical-Legal Partnership - 06/29/2022

Medical entities can join forces with legal entities to form medical-legal partnerships (MLPs), and these partnerships are helpful for patients whose conditions are worsened by social determinants of health.

The Power of Data: UTHealth Publishes Claims Statistics - 06/29/2022

After three years of work, the Center for Healthcare Data at McGovern Medical School at UTHealth is sharing part of its growing trove of numbers for data-driven discussions on many aspects of health care in Texas. The center doesn’t have all the answers. But its work under a federal certification from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has resulted in valuable state and regional statistics that the center leaders believe provide food not only for thought, but also for policy.

Survey: Addressing Patients’ Social Determinants of Health Fuels Physician Burnout - 04/01/2022

Physicians have long known how social determinants, or drivers, of health impact their patients’ lives, fuel disparities, increase care costs, and ultimately influence physicians’ quality outcomes and payment. They also have a sizable impact on physicians’ mental health, according to part one of The Physicians Foundation’s 2022 Survey of America’s Physicians.  

Navigating a Broken System: Helping Patients Use Health Resources - 03/31/2022

Whether patients do or don’t have health insurance, they need physicians’ help to make the most of their health care resources.

TMA Supports New Quality Measures for Social Determinant Screening - 03/10/2022

Showing its continued commitment to highlighting and addressing social determinants of health, the Texas Medical Association offered its “strongest support” to a pair of new quality measures the National Quality Forum (NQF) is considering for screening of those social factors.

Creative Collaboration: Here’s How Physician Practices Can Help Patients Address Their Social Determinants of Health - 09/06/2021

For physicians, addressing social determinants of health can be difficult because they are set in motion long before a patient arrives for a visit and can undermine the best of medications and treatments.

Health Disparity Report: Texas’ Black Infant Mortality Drops; Other Numbers Mixed - 07/14/2021

While the U.S. has made some improvements in health during recent years, deep and widespread health disparities persist – and, in some instances, have grown, according to the America’s Health Rankings 2021 Health Disparities Report, which also contains some Texas-specific data.

House Approves Bill to Help Address Social Determinants of Health - 05/06/2021

The Texas House of Representatives signed off on establishing a state office for health equity Wednesday morning, agreeing with medicine on the need for a new mechanism to address social determinants of health.

Hungering for a Solution: Physicians Can Help Tackle Food Insecurity - 02/01/2021

Not long after COVID-19 hit Texas last March, pediatricians at Austin Regional Clinic (ARC) began screening patients for food insecurity. The timing was coincidental but fortunate given the pandemic’s economic toll.

A Social Shift: COVID-19 Disparities Prompt Emphasis on Value-Based Care - 09/02/2020

COVID-19 disparities prompt Medicare to call for stronger emphasis on value-based care.