CHICAGO, Feb. 5, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- At a North Park University forum on Wednesday, Feb. 6, Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner, Julie Morita MD, will headline a discussion on the social determinants of health, including how exposure to violence can affect health.
Panel of community organizations will discuss how trauma and exposure to violence can affect health outcomes.
Focus will be on social issues like poverty and access to public transportation, rather than traditional health determinants, such as vaccines and diet.
The timely discussion will take place amidst a growing national health crisis marked by opioid addiction and gun violence.
"Our goal is to expand our view of public health," said North Park Health Sciences Professor, Keith Boyd. "More and more, we're recognizing that the social determinants of health such as whether or not you have been exposed to violence, have a stable home life, have access to public transportation –affect health outcomes, in some cases more than markers traditionally tracked such as a balanced diet, regular exercise, and cholesterol levels," Boyd said.
The panel will include social workers and activists at the forefront of urban issues, including: Angela Sedeno, Ph.D., of the Kedzie Center, a mental health services provider; Amy Carlozo, chaplain, and Kate Lawler, director, Violence Prevention Program at Swedish Covenant Hospital; and DeShaun "Trig" Adams and DeAndre McCottry of True Star, a nonprofit that gives at-risk youths hands-on experience working for media companies.
The panel will discuss how the social determinants of health including adverse childhood experiences affect lifelong health and how innovative efforts to protect and heal at-risk populations can improve overall health.
In her keynote address, Dr. Morita will discuss how the economically and socially disadvantaged face unique health challenges, such as shortened life expectancy. She will also discuss Healthy Chicago 2.0, a citywide plan that addresses these social determinants of health.
The event will begin at 12:30 p.m. in the Nancy and Timothy G. Johnson Center for Science and Community Life.
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North Park University is a city-centered, intercultural, and Christian university located in Chicago.