Creating Healthy & Equitable Communities: A New Social Compact For Health

The pandemic of 2020 forced our nation and the world to come to grips with the most serious infectious disease outbreak in a century. It also showed the holes in our social safety net and the impact of long-standing inequities as well as how racism/discrimination play in the fabric of our society. The illness and death rate from COVID-19 was much higher in communities of color because of societal factors that put people at higher risk when infected. Case managers, clinicians, and researchers learned from these difficult situations that advocacy for social justice was not just important—but crucial—for the wellbeing of their vulnerable clients. Case managers can refine their advocacy skills to empower their clients and families of clients to request more health and social services in their communities. 

Learning outcomes:

  • Describe social determinants of health and their impact on health
  • Assess community societal resources and apply them for particularly vulnerable clients
  • Utilize advocacy skills to empower and enhance the wellbeing of clients and communities impacted by COVID-19

Georges C. Benjamin, MD, MACP, FACEP (E), FNAPA
Executive Director
American Public Health Association

Georges C. Benjamin, MD, is a well-known health policy leader, practitioner and administrator. He currently serves as the executive director of the American Public Health Association, the nation's oldest and largest organization of public health professionals. He is also a former secretary of health for the state of Maryland.

Dr. Benjamin is a graduate of the Illinois Institute of Technology and the University of Illinois College of Medicine. He is board-certified in internal medicine, a master of the American College of Physicians, a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration, a fellow emeritus of the American College of Emergency Physicians and a member of the National Academy of Medicine. He serves on several nonprofit boards such as Research! America, the Truth Foundation, and the Reagan-Udall Foundation. He is also a member of the National Infrastructure Advisory Council, a council that advises the President on how best to assure the security of the nation’s critical infrastructure.

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