According to the CDC, social determinants of health are the nonmedical factors that influence health outcomes. These factors include economic policies, social policies, racism, climate change, and political systems.
One tool that the CDC uses to address SDOH for populations with complex needs is the PRAPARE patient risk assessment tool. This specific tool allows providers to collect patient-level data on the social determinants of health; PRAPARE is an acronym for Protocol for Responding to and Assessing Patient Assets, Risks, and Experiences. This tool begins by learning about the individual’s personal characteristics, family and home life, money and resources, social and emotional health, as well as optional questions that addresses general hardships like being imprisoned or feeling unsafe.
The healthcare system that I work in is unique and we serve a diverse population. I work in Allapatah, a county in Miami that houses lower class families. Camillus House is less than two miles away from the hospital, and there are homeless colonies surrounding the area as well. About 5 miles east, is Brickell and the art district of Miami, housing high-status, upper-class individuals. Additionally, we serve populations from TGK Correctional center. We serve so many different types of clients, that I believe that this screening tool would be the most effective in analyzing the needs of the population.
One way to implement this assessment tool would be to add it to the admissions power plan nurses complete when admitting patients to the hospital; however, not all patients that come to the emergency department are admitted into the hospital. Another way to implement this tool would be to have patient’s fill this out when filling out general forms in triage. If there are any further questions or clarification needed, then the nurse can follow up to get more information.
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