Too many people living in America aren’t as healthy as they could be. Why have we failed them, and how do we make progress toward improving the health of people everywhere? So much of a person’s and a community’s health is unrelated to genetics or even medical care, but is rather a product of social determinants of health, such as where and how a person lives. But there’s more to that story, too — because those factors are influenced by deeper, fundamental upstream causes like systemic racism and poverty, which create obstacles at every turn to the housing, education and economic conditions that promote and sustain health. To achieve “better health for people everywhere,” we must dismantle systemic racism and poverty at their roots, wherever they appear.
This approach requires a new perspective on the challenges of identifying and addressing the fundamental causes of health inequities. Meaningful progress will require bringing together a broader group beyond traditional health disciplines to consider urban and regional planning, private sector entities, community voices, government, public health and population health experts and more. Only by working together, being inclusive and holding ourselves accountable will we be able to prioritize and enact effective policies. This is the underlying purpose of the newly established Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) Center for Health Justice. At this event, Dr. David J. Skorton, president and chief executive officer of the AAMC, shared his expertise in facing the challenges of creating a healthier future for all.
This event was co-sponsored by the Baker Institute Center for Health and Biosciences and the Office of Faculty Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. Follow @BakerCHB on Twitter, and join the conversation with #BakerHealth.
5:30 p.m. — Welcome Remarks
5:35 p.m. — Introduction
5:45 p.m. — Presentation
Vivian Ho, Ph.D.
James A. Baker III Institute Chair in Health Economics; Director, Center for Health and Biosciences
David J. Skorton, M.D.
President and Chief Executive Officer, Association of American Medical Colleges
Elizabeth L. Travis, Ph.D.
Associate Vice President for Faculty Diversity, Equity & Inclusion and Mattie Allen Fair Professor in Cancer Research, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center