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SDOH Advocacy Update - 03/04/2024

SDOH Advocacy Update - 03/04/2024

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The Latest Advocacy and Government Relations News

The Root Cause Coalition is dedicated to amplifying the voices of communities and driving impactful policy reforms. As a nonprofit committed to addressing the root causes of health disparities and poverty, we aim to educate our members on recent news and research that advocates for equitable healthcare access and influencing policy decisions that combat food insecurity and poverty. 

Read our April 22, 2024 news on social drivers and advocacy updates below:

Social Drivers in the News:

The All of Us Research Program is an opportunity to enhance the diversity of US biomedical research
This article outlines the goals and programs of the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) All of Us Research Program. The program has enrolled more than 700,000 people since its launch in 2018 and is deliberately focused on advancing health equity by inclusively engaging and enrolling a diverse population to bring precision medicine to the full diversity of the US population and to improve health outcomes for all.  Eighty percent of All of Us participants are under-represented in biomedical research by race, ethnicity, age, geography, sexual and gender identity, income, education, access to health care and/or disability.
Revealing Disparities: Health Care Workers’ Observations of Discrimination Against Patients
This report highlights findings from a survey of health care workers that was done to understand discrimination against patients from the perspective of health care workers, and to help inform opportunities to address bias and unequal treatment. Surveyed workers across all races, ethnicities, genders and care settings reported witnessing discrimination against patients and consider it to be a serious problem. The report suggests health systems review treatment of non-English- speaking patients, measure equity in outcomes and experiences and train workers to identify and respond to racism to help address the issue and improve quality of care and health care outcomes.
Exploring Black birthing people’s perspectives on racial concordance with obstetric care providers
This study explored Black birthing people’s lived experiences with obstetric care and their perspectives on racial bias with providers. The researchers conducted one on one interviews and focus groups with people identifying as Black or African American and delivered a baby with their health system between 2019-2021 to assess lifetime experiences with racism and discrimination, experiences with the health care system during pregnancy and perspectives on racial concordance with obstetric providers. Main themes that emerged from the interviews included a desire for racially concordant providers, difficulty finding racially concordant providers, experience of stereotyping during obstetric care, not being heard by obstetric providers, and fear of dying in pregnancy/childbirth.
New Journal on Trauma-Informed Community Health, Nutrition, and Physical Activity (J-TICH) Launched
J-TICH is an open-access, peer-reviewed publication committed to advancing the field of trauma-informed nutrition security by highlighting the profound impact of community and collaboration and its potential to enhance the health and well-being of SNAP-Ed participants and low-income individuals. J-TICH looks to facilitate learning and growth by curating, enhancing and disseminating rigorous, reproducible, and impactful information and providing a platform for voices not traditionally heard in scholarly work to share information and tell stories. J-TICH is currently accepting submissions for the upcoming issue by May 17, 2024. Click here to learn more about the role of the author, the submission process and access writing resources. Funding for J-TICH is provided by CalFresh Healthy Living (CFHL)and oversight is provided by Leah’s Pantry.

SDoH Advocacy Update:

ARPA-H announces Sprint for Women's Health
The Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health (ARPA-H), an agency within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), recently announced the ARPA-H Sprint for Women’s Health, committing $100 million towards transformative research and development in women’s health. In the coming weeks, specific topics developed by ARPA-H Program Managers will be announced as part of a new request for solutions (RS) funding opportunity. Through the upcoming RS, ARPA-H will bring together an interdisciplinary group of researchers, clinicians, technology experts, and others to accelerate solutions and will host a virtual ARPA-H Proposers’ Day in March. At this event, potential researchers will be able to learn more about the opportunity to use innovative approaches to advance women’s health through delivering progress in science, technology, or systems. Click here to learn more about the ARPA-H Sprint for Women’s Health, including how to register for the virtual Proposers’ Day. 
H.R.7354 - Protect Black Women and Girls Act
This bill was introduced by Representative Robin Kelly [D-IL], to address disparities in outcomes for Black women and girls across a wide range of SDoH. The bill would establish an Interagency Task Force to examine the conditions and experiences of Black women and girls in education, economic development, healthcare and maternal health, labor and employment, housing and civil rights. This group would be tasked with providing recommendations on policies and programs at the federal, state, and local levels that best promote community-based methods for mitigating and addressing harm to Black women and girls. Additionally, the bill would direct the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights to conduct a study on the effects of economic, health, criminal justice, and social service factors on Black women and girls. The bill was referred to the Committees on the Judiciary, Education and the Workforce, Energy and Commerce and Financial Services. 
S.3770 - FAAN Act
Introduced by Senator Jeff Merkley [D-OR], this bill invests in nursing schools to ensure sufficient frontline providers for future public health challenges. The bill allocates grant funding to enhance and modernize nursing schools, with priority given to schools located in medically underserved communities. These grants may be used for updating curriculum and infrastructure and expanding opportunities for clinical education. Additionally, the grants would be used to increase recruitment and retention of both students and faculty from racial or ethnic groups that are underrepresented in the nursing workforce. After introduction, the bill was referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions. 
H.R.7346 - Climate and Health Protection Act
This bill, introduced by Representative Lauren Underwood [D-IL] would amend the Public Health Service Act to permanently authorize the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) Climate and Health Program as carried out by the National Center for Environmental Health. This program provides state, local, and tribal communities with data on climate change science as well as resources that support health departments and communities in their plans to address the public health impacts of the climate crisis. The bill was referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce

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