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January 2024: Social Determinants of Health Month

WHEREAS, social, economic, and environmental factors including, but not limited to, food security, housing stability, built environment, education, and transportation, collectively known as the social determinants of health (SDOH), greatly influence a person’s health status; and,

WHEREAS, reducing barriers to social and economic opportunity, in conjunction with access to quality medical care, is essential to improving health outcomes; and, 

WHEREAS, disparities in SDOH unfairly disadvantage specific individuals and communities and contribute to stark, persistent, and preventable health inequities and disparities; and,

WHEREAS, programs and policies that address the social determinants have been demonstrated to improve health outcomes, reduce inequities, and lower costs; and,

WHEREAS, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) promotes the health, safety, and stability of the residents of the state of Michigan by providing services and administering programs and policies that address the social determinants of health; and,

WHEREAS, community partnerships that coordinate policies, systems, and environments produce a more comprehensive and sustainable approach to improving health by bringing together expertise, advocates, and resources to address complex issues that impact the SDOH; and,

WHEREAS, MDHHS, in collaboration with partners throughout the state, has developed a statewide SDOH, “Michigan’s Roadmap to Healthy Communities”, that seeks to advance health equity by using a framework of improvement, alignment, and innovation at the state and local level for a greater impact in communities; and,

WHEREAS, the SDOH strategy promotes a Health in All Policies approach to systematically consider the health implications of decisions across sectors, seeking coordination and avoiding harmful health effects of policies outside the health sector in order to improve both population health and health equity; and,

WHEREAS, greater awareness of the importance of addressing the SDOH promotes prompt action from policymakers and community leaders to improve health and equity;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Gretchen Whitmer, governor of Michigan, do hereby proclaim January 2024 as Social Determinants of Health Month in Michigan.