How Do Social Determinants Affect Your Employees' Health?

How Do Social Determinants Affect Your Employees' Health?

While our daily habits influence our physical and mental health, the socioeconomic and environmental factors we live in also play crucial roles. These circumstances, known as the “social determinants of health” (SDOH), include how often a person works as well as the conditions of their workplace. To support your employees’ well-being, your company should create effective worksite wellness programs that recognize and build upon SDOH. You can achieve this goal by leveraging Givhero as your wellness initiative platform.

Here, we outline how every employee’s social determinants of health affect their lives and workplace culture:

What are the Social Determinants of Health?

The social determinants of health are the conditions–social, environmental, economic, and more–that each of us lives and works in. They influence our daily experiences and wellness, which means that they can sustain divisions and inequities across communities.

A social inequity, for instance, is when neighborhood grocery stores lack produce and other healthy foods. This scarcity prohibits residents’ access to a nutritious diet and increases their risk of diabetes, heart disease, and other conditions. As a result, they may have a lower average life expectancy than people in neighborhoods with easy access to healthy foods.

Appreciating how circumstances affect your employees can help you create inclusive employee wellness programs. So, consider the 5 primary SDOH:

  • Economic Stability - comprises the financial resources and concerns of both individuals and households, including their incomes, costs of living, and socioeconomic positions, all of which influence physical and mental health.

  • Access to & Quality of Education - considers the impact of education and personal development on our health and well-being. For example, does an individual understand how their daily habits affect their health? Additionally, how employable does their education make them?

  • Access to & Quality of Health Care - examines the accessibility of affordable healthcare services to individuals and communities. This determinant also factors in people’s ability to understand and navigate the healthcare system.

  • Neighborhood & Built Environment - considers how a person’s housing, neighborhood, and environment affect their health and well-being. This category includes people’s transportation options, dietary restrictions, water quality, and exposure to crime and violence.

  • Social & Community Context - covers how a community’s available activity, work, and recreation affect their residents’ health. Its factors include civic participation, conditions of its workplaces, rates/contexts of incarceration, and levels of discrimination.

How Social Determinants Affect Your Employees and Workplace Culture

We all come from–and live in–social determinants. These factors influence not only our health but also our worldviews. For instance, if you ask what wellness benefits your company should offer, employees raised and/or living in different SDOH may provide conflicting responses. Those responses, in turn, can create disputes that undermine workplace wellness and corporate health.

Specific effects of these disputes include:

  • Decreases in capability and productivity

  • Lower morale

  • Issues with inconsistent attendance

  • Strained relations between employees and management

  • Workplace misconduct and disruptive behavior

  • Increased turnover rates

However, an ambitious and diversified wellness program can avoid these effects. Use the social determinants of health model as a roadmap to develop worksite wellness programs that promote employees’ health and well-being through diverse means.

For example, you might design an SDOH wellness program that incentivizes employees to exercise and visit their general practitioner. Social determinants can help you expand what qualifies as exercise, how often employees should do so, and consider expanding “preventative care” to doctors beyond a general practitioner.

Furthermore, signing up for Givhero gives all your employees access to our digital platform, eclipsing SDOH boundaries to support employees’ exercise and charitable efforts. Its functionality allows you to create customized wellness goals and challenges for your employees to support healthy habits.

How Do Social Determinants Affect Your Employees' Health?

Givhero: Providing Excellent Worksite Wellness Programs To All Businesses

A healthier workforce means greater engagement and higher performance for your company. Givhero supports big and small companies that seek to improve their employees’ health and wellness through comprehensive worksite wellness programs. Our social platform allows you to create and organize your company’s wellness programs efficiently. It also allows your employees to track their progress so that they can actively engage in wellness goals and earn charity donation rewards. Contact Givhero at (240) 801-5927 or schedule a call with us to learn more about our social wellness platform today.