An interprofessional urban health elective focused on the social determinants of health

Authors

  • Andrew Pinto St. Michael's Hospital Centre for Urban Health Solutions Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute Toronto, ON http://orcid.org/0000-0003-1841-9347
  • Matthew To Faculty of Medicine, Dalhousie University http://orcid.org/0000-0002-1283-768X
  • Anne Rucchetto The Upstream Lab, Centre for Urban Health Solutions, Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute, St. Michael’s Hospital http://orcid.org/0000-0002-4662-4025
  • Malika Sharma Maple Leaf Medical Clinic, Toronto, Ontario http://orcid.org/0000-0002-3729-4554
  • Katherine Rouleau 1. Department of Family and Community Medicine, St. Michael’s Hospital 2. Department of Family and Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto 3. Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.36834/cmej.43066

Keywords:

Medical Education, Social Determinants of Health, Inner City Halth

Abstract

Background: More than half of the world’s population now lives in cities. Health professionals should understand how social factors and processes in urban spaces determine individual and population health. We report on lessons from an interprofessional urban health elective developed to focus on the social determinants of health (SDOH).                

Methods: An interprofessional committee developed an urban health elective based in downtown Toronto. Course objectives included promoting collaboration to address SDOH, identifying barriers to care, accessing community-based resources, and learning to advocate at individual- and community-levels.

Results: Seventeen students from eight disciplines participated during the 2011-2012 academic year. Sessions were co-facilitated with community partners and community members identified as experts based on their personal experience. Topics included housing, income and food security, Indigenous communities in urban spaces, and advocacy. Students collaborated on self-directed projects, which ranged from literature reviews to policy briefs for government. Students particularly valued learning about community agencies and hearing from people with lived experience.

Conclusion: The specific health challenges faced in urban settings can benefit from an interprofessional approach informed by the experiences and needs of patient communities. This elective was innovative in engaging students in interprofessional learning on how health and social agencies collaborate to tackle social determinants in urban spaces. 

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Author Biographies

Andrew Pinto, St. Michael's Hospital Centre for Urban Health Solutions Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute Toronto, ON

Dr. Andrew Pinto is a Public Health and Preventive Medicine specialist and family physician at St. Michael’s Hospital. Dr. Pinto completed his residency at the University of Toronto and his Master’s in Health Policy, Planning and Financing at the London School of Economics and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Currently, he is a Scientist in the Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute of St. Michael’s Hospital and an Assistant Professor at the University of Toronto. His research is focused on health economics, equity and the evaluation of complex population health interventions.

--from the St. Michael's Hospital website 

Matthew To, Faculty of Medicine, Dalhousie University

N/A

Malika Sharma, Maple Leaf Medical Clinic, Toronto, Ontario

N/A

Katherine Rouleau, 1. Department of Family and Community Medicine, St. Michael’s Hospital 2. Department of Family and Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto 3. Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto

N/a

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Published

2018-11-13

How to Cite

1.
Pinto A, To M, Rucchetto A, Sharma M, Rouleau K. An interprofessional urban health elective focused on the social determinants of health. Can. Med. Ed. J [Internet]. 2018 Nov. 13 [cited 2024 Jun. 15];9(4):e127-134. Available from: https://journalhosting.ucalgary.ca/index.php/cmej/article/view/43066

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