UNNATURAL CAUSES is inequality making us sick? HEALTH EQUITY research topics and resources to learn more
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Philadelphia Department of Public Health

LOCATION: Philadelphia, PA, U.S.A.


FOCUS AREA: Children / Families, Education, Environment / Land Use, Food security / Nutrition, Health Care Delivery, Housing / Neighborhoods, Immigration, Income & Wealth, International, Jobs & Work, Public Health, Public Policy, Race / Ethnicity, Social Inclusion, Transportation

HEALTH EQUITY INITIATIVES: The Philadelphia Department of Public Health operates eight comprehensive health centers where Philadelphians can get high quality health care regardless of insurance status or immigration status. We provide care to nearly 100,000 Philadelphians each year. As the local public health agency we also operate public health programs, including immunization, childhood lead poisoning prevention, increasing availability of healthy affordable food, disease prevention, etc, to increase health and decrease the burden of poor health. Our voters mandated in 2003 that "because health care is an essential safeguard of human life and dignity, the Philadelphia Department of Public Health will develop a plan so that all Philadelphians have access to decent health care."

We have been hard at work since then to develop such a plan. Our findings were 1) in spite of the hard efforts of many health care providers and world class health institutions located in Philadelphia , there are many Philadelphians who suffer from lack of accessible health care, and (2) there has been a lack of leadership. The chief recommendations of our report, "Decent Health Care in Philadelphia: Local Leadership and Action", are to work to build a unified voice in Philadelphia for state and national health insurance, and to establish a collaborative group, composed by local leaders, including those representing community members, health care institutions, civic leaders, labor, and safety net providers, and government, whose mission is to work together for decent health care for all in Philadelphia.

This emerging non-profit organization, Healthy Philadelphia, will be co-chaired by our health commissioner as well as a mayoral appointee, and an essential component will be public meetings located in neighborhoods that will be organized along with the support of our community partners, like block captains and other grass roots leaders, which will help to inform the work of the board. Our first task will be to work to establish a health care home for everyone in Philadelphia and establish networks so that there will be continuity of care for those discharged from hospitals who have no where to go for their care.

- Host a screening event featuring UNNATURAL CAUSES

Visit this organization's Web site:

Carol Rogers
Coordinator, Universal Health Care Initiative

Philadelphia Department of Public Health
Philadelphia, PA

Phone number: