Background: Social determinants such as employment, housing, food and nutrition, education, transportation, recreation, and quality health care affect health. Imbalances in social determinants manifest as disparities and inequities in health. Discussants of a Westat Center on Health Disparities & Health Equity Research roundtable event highlighted innovative solutions and their applications for addressing health disparities. This roundtable highlighted creative approaches for sharing knowledge, applying technology innovations, and implementing sociological interventions as critical elements for promoting health equity.
Goal: The goal of this research is to use data from a Health Equity Roundtable discussion to identify and describe the benefits of recent technological and sociological interventions to improve health and wellness towards the goal of achieving health equity.
Objectives: • Identify innovations and interventions used to address population health needs to achieve health equity • Describe the importance of research and data in health policy and practice to address health disparities and promote health equity • Discuss how narrative inquiry, media, and information technology can be used in community-based participatory approach to explore health disparities
Approach: A Health Equity Roundtable featuring multidisciplinary professionals who engaged in an interactive dialogue about strategies for eliminating disparities and achieving health equity was held in November 2016. Content analysis was performed on the video recording of the roundtable discussion. The video was reviewed and data from the video was organized and coded, to identify key themes and strategies for achieving health equity.
Results: The Health Equity Roundtable participants discussed various strategies and interventions used to address population health needs to improve health equity. Interventions identified included the use of wearable technology to provide early identification of diseases, the application of telemedicine for addressing service needs across settings and geographic boundaries, and the use of video as an educational tool for addressing health disparities and promoting health equity. Additionally, participants emphasized the development of legislative and policy agendas to address prevention, health insurance coverage and workforce development.
Importance to public health: Emerging technological innovations and sociological interventions provide effective means for disease prevention, increase accessibility to quality healthcare, and develop healthcare policy that will address health disparities and promote health equity.