Saturday, October 06, 2007

Unnatural Causes: Is Inequality Making Us Sick?

“Real people have problems with their lives as well as with their organs. Those social problems affect their organs. In order to improve public health, we need to improve society.” - Sir Michael Marmot, Chair, WHO Commission on the Social Determinants of Health
I just wanted to highlight a new documentary that is going to be shown on PBS in 2008:
Unnatural Causes is a four-hour documentary series produced by California Newsreel with Vital Pictures, Inc. Presented for PBS broadcast by the National Minority Consortia of Public Television. Public Impact Campaign in association with the Joint Center Health Policy Institute.

The documentary will discuss the socioeconomic and racial inequalities in health. The root to poor health outcomes are health disparities and social conditions into which we are born which largely impact how healthy we are:
The U.S. is one of the richest countries on the planet. Yet, we rank 30th in the world for life expectancy, worse than every other industrialized nation - and even less developed countries like Cuba, Malta, and Costa Rica. Why? Because inequality in America is - literally - taking years off our lives. This affects not just the poorest among us, but the richest too.
I would encourage you all to partake in the dialogue of health disparities.

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