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Making Social Care Part of Health Care

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine (NASEM) recently released a study report about the need to integrate social care into health care delivery. On Jan. 23, NASEM will hold an event providing community members with the opportunity to learn more about the report and respond to it.

The event will be held from 12:30 to 4 p.m. in the Brainard Room, fifth floor of the Rush University Medical Center Professional Building, 1725 W. Harrison Ave.

Released last September, NASEM’s report, “Integrating Social Care into the Delivery of Health Care: Moving Upstream to Improve the Nation’s Health,” highlights the importance of paying attention to a patient’s social conditions when providing care. These conditions include housing, transportation and access to food. The report highlights the importance of these social conditions and how they can affect the delivery and outcome of a patient’s health care.

Robyn Golden, associate vice president, population health and aging at Rush University Medical Center, will speak at the event. Golden served on the NASEM committee on Integrating Social Needs Care into the Delivery of Health Care to Improve the Nation’s Health, which issued the report.

NASEM’s event at Rush will give attendees a chance to learn more about the consensus committee’s recommendations as well as hear local leaders’ responses to the study in a panel discussion.

The consensus committee sets five goals for successful integration of social care. They include using five health care system activities: building a workforce, developing a digital infrastructure, financing the integration of social care and funding research. The committee believes these goals may result in improved health and reducing health disparities throughout the area.

Attendees will have a chance to brainstorm and talk with each other about the best way to take the committee’s recommendations and “Build a Chicagoland response.” These opportunities include breakout discussions and learning about activities — also known as the “5As” — that can facilitate the integration of social care. Participants will be able to use this information to create a strategy for using social factors when delivering health care in the Chicago area.

The event is available to diverse stakeholders at no cost, and a livestream will be available for those who can’t attend in person. To learn more, visit https://www.chasci.org/chicagoland.

The National Academies’ consensus report and summary materials are available at http://nationalacademies.org/hmd/Reports/2019/integrating-social-care-into-the-delivery-of-health-care.

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