University of Sourthern California


The Social Determinants of Health | A Public Health Framework

The social determinants of health represent aspects of people’s social identity, their social environment and their social position. It’s a broad topic and includes issues like justice, inequality, health inequity, poverty and human rights.

The WHO states that, “the social determinants of health (SDH) are the conditions in which people are born, grow, work, live, and age, and the wider set of forces and systems shaping the conditions of daily life. These forces and systems include economic policies and systems, development agendas, social norms, social policies and political systems. The SDH network across WHO supports action on the SDH. The SDGs provide a comprehensive blueprint for human development and for systematically addressing the social determinants of health.”