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How addressing social and economic factors can help close the gap in Detroit’s health equity

The factors that regularly impact Detroiters’ health aren’t always clinical, don’t always relate to hospitals or doctors’ offices, and don’t always have to do with a person’s genes.
Phyllis Meadows, a senior fellow at The Kresge Foundation’s Detroit Program, explains that there’s a clear understanding that the social determinants of health can significantly influence a person’s well-being.
“If we look at health as an indicator, then probably 20% of what we see in health conditions, like high blood pressure, or you name it, is affected far more by our social and environmental conditions, than it is affected by our biology, or our genes,” she says. “Looking at the social determinants of health means looking at some of the root causes that impact health. And those root causes have more to do with more tangible things in our environment.”
Meadows points to factors like water quality, soil quality, whether a person is…

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