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Social Determinants of Health

Malnutrition, food insecurity and hunger often go hand-in-hand with obesity and chronic disease. Many vulnerable families live in neighborhoods that lack access to affordable and healthy foods, relying on cheap, high-calorie, low-nutrient foods to get by. Poverty, social inequity, and other key social determinants of health are largely to blame.

PHI champions a public health approach that doesn’t just call on people to eat healthier or exercise more. Rather, we call for a shift in the conditions that lead to unhealthy outcomes in such epidemic proportions. We work together with communities to implement on-the-ground policies and programs that make healthy foods more accessible and affordable; advance local, sustainable agriculture; create and promote safe places to be physically active; and more. Many of these efforts have co-benefits for the environment and local economic development.

Our expertise includes:


Advocating for policies that improve social determinants: PHI experts can work with you to advance policy solutions that address the social determinants of health. In addition, we are available to track federal and state legislation, regulations and budgeting processes across a wide range of social issues that impact health.

Facilitating collaboration and coalitions: PHI has pioneered the "health in all policies" approach, and our experts are available to help identify and support opportunities for collaboration with diverse partners from multiple sectors, such as transportation, economic development, local community groups, medicine, and more. 

Capacity building and training: Addressing the social determinants requires a broad-reaching approach to understanding the environments that shape and impact health outcomes. PHI staff is available to train and consult with community collaboratives, public health departments, organizational staff, and multi-sector partners on a social determinants of health approach. 



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13 funders join PHI in COVID equity initiative, Together Toward Health

Together Toward Health will connect with community based organizations to expand workforce development opportunities for Californians most impacted by COVID-19, and create and amplify public outreach efforts to reduce its spread.

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