When it comes to a patient’s health, influencing factors are more than just what happens in the body. A person’s environment can also have a powerful impact on health outcomes. For example, whether a person lives in a community flush with grocery stores and healthy food options or, by contrast, in a food desert, may significantly affect their well-being.
These non-medical factors that can alter a patient’s health status are known as social determinants of health (SDOH). Due to their importance, policy makers and providers are keenly focused on documenting them when care is provided. The infographic below breaks down the basics of SDOH and why their capture is critical.