What we take away from these two level-setting definitions is that Health Equity is a complicated issue.
The Social Determinants that play a major role in achieving Health Equity are broad, complex, and intertwined. For years, many dedicated professionals have worked to reduce health inequities. So why do we think the opportunity to create real impact is now?
The short answer is technology. At no time in human history have we been able to connect with each other or share and analyze massive amounts of information in the ways that new technologies allow.
The COVID-19 pandemic forced many people to quickly develop and adopt new technologies.
Of course, advancing health equity is more complex than simply the capability and acceptance of new technologies. Technologies that improve to health outcomes can, and often do, unintentionally widen disparities. For example, not everyone benefited from telehealth during the pandemic shutdown. Those without access to technology (computers, devices) or connection (broadband, cell service) and those who don’t trust that their health data would remain private and secure, received less access to care.