Advancing action on the political determinants of health in the United States

J Public Health Policy. 2024 Jun 20. doi: 10.1057/s41271-024-00497-y. Online ahead of print.

Abstract

In an era of political polarization, growing anti-science sentiment, and pervasive inequities in the social drivers of health, a rising tide of potentially harmful state policy proposals in the United States threaten to undermine the health of the public. In response, our health system's population health and government relations offices partnered with key health advocacy organizations in our state of New Hampshire to offer an interactive virtual learning series aimed at preparing diverse professionals and citizens to effectively advocate for sound health policies. Two hundred forty-seven individuals registered for the six-session series. Our findings indicate that participants experienced increased awareness of the political determinants of health, better understanding of specific legislative proposals in New Hampshire, and enhanced preparedness for advocacy, with many reporting greater active engagement in advocacy. Given its flexible and virtual nature, this innovative learning model could easily be adapted to promote dialogue and advocacy for sound health policy in diverse regional contexts.

Keywords: ECHO; Equity; Policy; Political determinants; Social determinants.