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May 30, 2019

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Wednesday, April 14, 2021

2:30 PM - 4:00 PM Deep-dive to the fundamental causes and social determinants of health disparities: A call for interdisciplinary collaboration


CUNY Institute for Health Equity (CIHE)
Inaugural Speaker’s Series on:
Health Equity and Health Disparities

Nancy Breen, PhD, received her PhD in Economics from the Graduate Faculty of the New School for Social Research in New York City in 1988. Her undergraduate degrees are in Political Science and French. Dr. Breen served as health economist at the National Institutes of Health: from 1991 to 2015 at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and from 2015 to 2019 at the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD). She co-edited the NIMHD-sponsored AJPH Supplement (January 2019) “New Perspectives to Advance Minority Health and Health Disparities Research”. Dr. Breen’s more than 100 peer-reviewed articles reflect her desire to improve the evidence base for understanding the social determinants underlying health disparities. Her published work has increasingly focused on how structures and policies lead to health disparities. Her objective is to inspire broad-based interventions leading to social justice and economic sustainability.

We begin with two important examples of public health policy, then survey the concepts of Fundamental Causes and Social Determinants of Health (SDoH). After comparing how Fundamental Causes --structural racism and poverty—affect the health of racial/ethnic populations in the US, we will explore how some key SDoH --income, wealth, and housing stability—have evolved differentially for these same racial/ethnic populations over time. A deeper understanding of upstream determinants requires investigating economic inequality as a historical phenomenon. Today’s macroeconomy promotes financial inequality, consumer debt, and poor health in multiple ways. Finally, we return to public health policy by considering some interventions designed to address racial/ethnic and class inequalities in income, wealth and housing and end by probing how these policies might be refined using Community Based Participatory Research to become even more effective.

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Thursday, May 30, 2019

9:00 AM - 4:45 PM IT Center Hours

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