Health problems have a deeper root than just genetic defects or contact with germs and viruses. Often enough, they have to do with the greater problems that affect communities, such as low-access to healthy food or lack of affordable housing, which can exacerbate stress as people work longer hours to pay the bills.
Fortunately, health officials have started to recognize these community issues as the actual culprits for bad health, leading to a number of initiatives aimed at addressing root problems to influence health outcomes. The latest and greatest of which comes from the Healthcare Anchor Network (HAN), a group of 14 of the nation’s largest hospitals that have just pledged $700 million over five years to boost affordable housing in their communities.
Along with affordable housing, the money is also meant to address access to healthy foods, entrepreneurship among women and minorities, and expanding childcare access.
The initiative follows another big one that we reported last week, in which tech giants such as Facebook and Google pledged billions of dollars to solve the affordable housing crisis that they helped create through their rapid growth.