He notes: “The social determinants of health go far beyond basic needs that are easily identified by a look at a patient’s household income. They extend into factors like a lack of caregiver support in the household, a lack of education, transportation issues and substance abuse.”

“To be ahead of the curve when it comes to holistic patient care, hospitals should (1) connect with patients to determine their full scope of need; (2) form partnerships with local organizations to offer extended support; and (3) develop a systematic process for making referrals and tracking patient outcomes — to ensure that all factors are addressed.”

To read his essay, please hit this link.