Social Determinants of Health

To:  MAFP Members

From: Kisha N. Davis, M.D., MAFP President

Date: June 4, 2015

We discussed at our most recent Board meeting on 8/17/15 how we as an organization can respond to the events in Baltimore in response to the death of Freddie Gray.  There was agreement that while this is a difficult topic, the social unrest in our communities affects the health of our patients and hence we as family physicians are concerned.  I have addressed this in my article for the Summer edition of the MAFP journal.  In addition, with unanimous approval of the Board of Directors, MAFP has sent the following letter to Governor Hogan (click here to view the letter), with similar letters sent to Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen. These letters are a collective effort with extensive input from our delegates to the National Conference of Constituency Leaders, as well as the chairs of our Advocacy and Public Health committees.

The point of these letters is to:

  1. Highlight the fact that social determinants are important to family physicians because it effects the health of communities and the patients we serve
  2. To support current initiatives that work to address social determinants of health (Health Enterprise Zones is one example).
  3. To offer MAFP and family physicians as leaders in working towards solution tothese problems.

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