Many factors contribute to a person’s health. The healthcare community has largely focused on biological factors–such as family history and genetics–as well as health behavior factors, such as smoking, alcohol use, and illicit/nonprescribed drug use. However, growing research is showing that the key drivers of health are social and economic environment, health behavior, clinical care, and physical environment.
The connection between these drivers of health are complex and interrelated, and they affect healthcare access for both the individual and his/her community. These interconnections–called social determinants of health (SDOH)–need to be considered to successfully treat and manage a patient.