Social Determinants of Health Sample Paper


Social Determinants of Health (SDOH) has emerged as an important factor in building healthy populations. SDOH describes the conditions and the environment in which people are born, play, work, and live affect their access to quality healthcare and health outcomes (Magnan, 2017). These conditions determine how healthy or not a person lives their life. Examples of critical social determinants that determine the outcome of the quality of life include job opportunities, education, conditions of the economy, training, access to healthcare, and social support, and public safety. Other factors such as crime, poverty, literacy, segregation, racism, and culture also influence the quality of life a person lives. This paper examines the SDOH affecting the family and family health status of the family discussed in part 1 of the family health assessment assignment part 1. Social determinants of health lead to improved care management of populations by prompting them to take care of their health and well-being.

Social Determinants of Health

The family being studied in this case is a middle-class Caucasian family. They live a relatively stable and comfortable life in a middle-class suburban area with numerous social facilities and resources such as schools, hospitals, health and fitness clubs, and other social amenities. Based on these conditions, the social health determinants and family status are influenced by their surrounding environment.

Concerning poverty, the family in focus is a middle-class family living in a good and secure neighborhood. The father in this family is a well-established dentist while the wife is a primary school teacher. The salaries of the parents enable them and their children to live a relatively comfortable life. First, the family lives in a good and safe environment, secondly, the family can afford more than just the basic needs. Based on this assessment, this family is not poor and has the means to live a good and comfortable life.

Regarding education, the family being studied has members who are educated. To begin with, the grandparents, who also live with the family, are retired civil servants, which means they had some form of education. As mentioned earlier, the father of the house is a dentist while the mother is a teacher. Their three children attend a local private school within the neighborhood. Based on this history, one can conclude that this is a family with a good educational background. The education has helped the adults to secure stable jobs with good incomes to cater to the family.

The family has a considerable amount of wealth that enables them to live a good life. The father of the children has accumulated some money from his dentistry practice. First, the family lives in their own house which means it is family property. Secondly, the family owns a few businesses in the local town which supplements their income. The virtue of owning properties and businesses means that this family has a stable wealth background.

Family Screening

There are some areas of concern in the family that calls for further medical evaluation to ascertain the level of risk to the family. Out of the 7 family members, only two have no problems with overweight. Being overweight has numerous health risks such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, stroke, and osteoarthritis (Assari, 2018). This fact means that the 5 out of the 7 family members who are overweight need further screening to ascertain their level of risk to the above-mentioned health complications. The screening will indicate any underlying issues so that preventative countermeasures can be employed before further damage is done.

Some family members in the focus family are heavy tobacco smokers. These family members expose themselves to health risks such as diabetes, lung problems, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), and rheumatoid arthritis. The screening will reveal the level of risk each of the smokers in the family faces so that preventative or curative measures can be taken to avert further health problems.

Another health concern noted in the family is stress and anxiety. Three out of the 7 family members have some form of stress and anxiety which needs further medical evaluation to ascertain the level of risks to other complications. Untreated stress and anxiety can lead to other serious health complications such as stroke, heart attack, depression, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, and abnormal heartbeat among other complications. The family needs consistent health screening to help them in early detection of underlying health risks posed by these habits.

Application of Health Model

For this family, the best health model is the health belief model. This is a model of health promotion that is used in promoting disease-prevention programs. I chose this model for this family because as Gabriel, Hoch and Cramer (2019) notes, it can be used to predict, evaluate, and explain changes in the health behaviors of individuals. The health belief model puts focus on the beliefs that individuals have concerning health. The model operates on the notion of perceived susceptibility, perceived severity, self-efficacy, and exposure to factors that make people act.

Regarding the application of the health belief model, this model can be used to convey to the family the consequences of some of the risk behaviors that expose them to further health risks. The conveyance of such information helps the family to understand the perceived severity of the consequences of their health behaviors (Green, Murphy & Gryboski, 2020). Secondly, the health belief model can be used to communicate to the family the recommended actions and the benefits they stand to gain by taking action. This model can also be used to offer assistance to the family in identifying the barriers to action and how to reduce them (McArthur et al., 2018). Another critical importance of the health belief model is that it aids in the collection of information through a health needs assessment to find out who is at risk and how they can be helped before the problem gets out of proportion.


`The conditions and the environment in which people live influences the quality of the lives they live. Factors such as poverty, education, access to healthcare, crime, poverty, literacy, segregation, racism, and culture play an integral role in determining the quality of life that people live. A person living in abject poverty does not have access to social amenities such as education, hospitals, health and fitness facilities, and adequate food-all which are important in living a quality life. The health belief model can be used to educate populations about the consequences of their risk behaviors which exposes them to further health risks. Besides, this model is important because it helps populations to understand the perceived severity of the consequences of their health behaviors so that they can take urgent action about their health.


  • Assari S. (2018). Family Income Reduces Risk of Obesity for White but Not Black Children. Children (Basel, Switzerland), 5(6), 73.
  • Gabriel, E. H., Hoch, M. C., & Cramer, R. J. (2019). Health Belief Model Scale and Theory of Planned Behavior Scale to assess attitudes and perceptions of injury prevention program participation: An exploratory factor analysis. Journal Of Science And Medicine In Sport22(5), 544-549.
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