256169 Roots of Health Inequity: Challenges and opportunities in developing a web-based, interactive course for the public health workforce

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 : 8:35 AM - 8:55 AM

Mikhaila Richards, MSc , Health Equity and Social Justice Initiatives, The National Association of County and City Health Officials, Washington, DC
Despite a burgeoning and concentrated interest in tackling health inequities, relatively few students—and even fewer public health practitioners—are exposed to discourse about the root causes of these inequities. The National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO) aims to address this issue through an interactive, multimedia curriculum that offers a conceptual grounding in the basic principles of social justice and the root causes. The website's content is intended to reframe the role of public health and the role of public health officials (to address the social injustices that create and perpetuate health inequities). Roots of Health Inequity—a web-based course for the current and future public health workforce—prompts participants to reflect on how institutions structure the possibilities for health and wellness. The course website also serves as a learning community for students, researchers, and practitioners to share knowledge and experience. Roots of Health Inequity's development was framed by several challenges and opportunities. A central challenge was making discourse on macro-level political concepts accessible and relevant to NACCHO's core constituency—public health officials and their staff members, who endeavor to overcome obstacles to social justice embedded in public health training, research, and practice. This presentation will explore dilemmas and opportunities in developing and implementing the curriculum as well as opportunities for reframing the role of public health and public health practitioners. Session participants will also have an opportunity to explore multimedia and interactive presentations from the curriculum.

Learning Areas:
Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Advocacy for health and health education
Diversity and culture
Public health or related education
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
1) Define the challenges and opportunities associated with developing a web-based, interactive curriculum for public health practitioners about racism and gender- and class-based oppression. 2) Identify opportunities for reframing and transforming common understanding of the role of public health and public health practitioners. 3) Explain how to access and successfully implement a web-based, interactive curriculum about the root causes of health inequity as an educator, community-based organization.

Keywords: Health Activism, Health Disparities

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the Senior Program Analyst for NACCHO’s Health Equity and Social Justice Initiatives. I helped to develop—and now manage—Roots of Health Inequity, a web-based, interactive course that helps public health professionals recognize and act more effectively on health inequities. I earned a MSc in Society, Human Development and Health at the Harvard School of Public Health. My professional experience combines subject area expertise in health and social behavior, media development, and instructional design.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.