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CMAJ, 188(17-18), E474-E483. “Taking action on the social determinants of health in clinical practice: a framework for health professionals.” Andermann, A.


This article is about the influence of social health determinants on health care and how physicians can help their patients to overcome their medical issues and what measures should be taken on a social level to maintain a healthy community. It is a common review that people who are poor live short life and fall ill easily whereas rich people have better facilities regarding medical and even developed countries are facing this issue. This is important for everyone to get proper guidelines and proper health facilities. Doctors should keep in mind all factors regarding their patient’s social life.


            The major theme of the paper is, that social difference increases the chances of health problems because one does not have the financial resources for fulfilling even basic life needs. Their quality of life is low and due to being less educated, they do not know how to lead a healthy life.

Basic components of the article:

Following are the main components of the article.

Social determinants of health:

Factors like family income, social support, employment, gender, and available facilities are called social determinants of health and these factors affect a lot on an individual’s health.

The link between social factors and health:

Social factors have a deep link with the health of an individual. For example, a child who is from a lower-class family will have more health issues than a child from an elite class. In easy words, the more facilities one has the better life one will lead.

Influence of health workers on social determinants:

People related to the health department and other health workers can influence the social determinants by the following means:

On an individual level:                       

  • The comfort level between physician and patient is necessary. The physician should ask the patient about his social context. Most people are facing health issues because they are away from their hometown for earning or people may be facing mental torture by society due to any incompatibility. So, a doctor’s behavior with a patient can help him to recover soon. Physicians can give suggestions and ideas regarding their issues in caring nature.

On the community level:

  • Creating an easy and comfortable atmosphere for patients will help them to overcome issues. For example, providing a child care facility will help a single mother to have treatment peacefully.
  • Arranging medical health camps or providing financial aid can help people to communicate with doctors who cannot afford clinics or avoid getting appointments.
  • Health workers should be polite and understanding. They should follow the proper communication channel. Their way of discussion should not hurt any of the patient’s self-esteem.

Hurdles in setting health standards in society:

  • People do not open up to anyone easily about what kind of problem one facing socially. Most of them do not share what circumstances or issues they are facing.
  • Physicians do not give the proper attention or extra time to every patient.
  • Most doctors focus on solving health issues medically.
  • Early childhood development has a deep impact on health. Abusive behavior, family issues, family income, and living with mentally ill family members lead to health issues.


Following are some suggestions to come up with the hurdles coming in way of setting better health standards

  • Health workers and physician’s behavior should be nice and polite to patients.
  • Spending some extra time with each patient will help to understand their mental health and the impact of social factors on their health.
  • Providing more resources and facilities for health workers can help as well.


In reference to the article, it is concluded that social factors surely have an impact on health. These determinants can influence an individual’s life but social health workers and physicians can play a vital role in achieving the health goals of any community. Health workers and physicians are an entity of any society thus positive behavior from them can help patients to have better health.

Role of an Administrator:

Being an administrator, I can help out people by arranging free medical facilities or by raising funds for their medical or health care needs. It would be helpful for people who are facing financial issues. Arranging medical camps in schools or colleges with help of physicians and other authorities will help to promote the importance of health care. The influence of social health determinants can be controlled by taking serious measures on the community level.

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