Category: Health Disparities, Health Equity, Social Determinants of Health

Primary Competency Area

Promoting Equity in Public Health and the Role of Change Management

Course Objective

  • Define key concepts that contribute to health equity in society: justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion.
  • Identify the impact of health equity for vulnerable populations
  • Clarify the role of public health leaders in creating greater health equity
  • Establish links between change management and making improvements in health equity
  • Assess the status of health equity in a local community
  • Gather diverse perspectives about factors that affect the health of vulnerable populations
  • Identify ways to communicate about challenges and opportunities for public health equity

Date: June 30th, 2022

Subject Matter Expert: 
Emil J. Sadloch
President, Sadloch Development Associates
Instructor for Rutgers University’s Executive and Professional Education, School of Public Health, School of Environmental and Biological Sciences


This training is the fourth module in the Strategic Skills Training Series focused on Change Management for Public Health Professionals developed by Region 2 Public Health Training Center. This learning module will look at health equity from a “change management” perspective. Specifically, this module will provide learners with insights about how awareness of various concepts can support local public health efforts to take action and move forward on the road to achieving health equity. Learners will be exposed to valuable content about topics linked to justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion and see how to facilitate change in a typical public health setting using a case study approach set in the fictitious Tycho County.

Learners will be able to:

  1. Define key concepts that contribute to health equity in society: justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion.
  2. Identify the impact of health equity for vulnerable populations
  3. Clarify the role of public health leaders in creating greater health equity
  4. Establish links between change management and making improvements in health equity
  5. Assess the status of health equity in a local community
  6. Gather diverse perspectives about factors that affect the health of vulnerable populations
  7. Identify ways to communicate about challenges and opportunities for public health equity
Improving Well-Being of Low Wage Food Workers: What Role for State and Local Governments?

Course Objective

  • Identify key threats to the well-being of low-wage food workers
  • Describe the role of policy and programs related to low-wage workers across sectors in reducing or increasing health and other inequities
  • Describe current responsibilities of state and local health departments and other public agencies in protecting the well-being of food workers
  • Identify at least three examples of policy or program initiatives that state and local health departments can undertake to improve the well-being and life chances of low-wage food workers
  • Describe one specific action your agency can take in the coming year to better protect the health of low-wage food workers

Date: June 30th, 2022

Subject Matter Experts:
Nicholas Freudenberg, DrPH, MPH
Distinguished Professor of Public Health, CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy
Director, CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute

Emilia Vignola,
PhD candidate, CUNY School of Public Health

Luis Saavedra,
Research Associate, CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute


Ensuring and maintaining our nation’s food supply is the responsibility of approximately 19.7 million workers. The U.S. food system – including production, processing, distribution, retail, and service – relies on these workers to ensure the dietary needs of every American. Despite their critical role in our society, food workers are paid some of the lowest wages in the entire workforce, have limited access to benefits, and have high rates of occupational morbidity and mortality. As public health professionals, promoting the health and well-being of low-wage food workers is part of our responsibility to meet key public health goals, including protecting food safety, reducing food insecurity and hunger, preventing occupational illnesses and injuries, and reducing the income inequality that is the fundamental driver of health inequities. In essence, threats to low-wage food workers are threats to us all.

Learners will be able to:

  1. Identify key threats to the well-being of low-wage food workers
  2. Describe the role of policy and programs related to low-wage workers across sectors in reducing or increasing health and other inequities
  3. Describe current responsibilities of state and local health departments and other public agencies in protecting the well-being of food workers
  4. Identify at least three examples of policy or program initiatives that state and local health departments can undertake to improve the well-being and life chances of low-wage food workers
  5. Describe one specific action your agency can take in the coming year to better protect the health of low-wage food workers
How to Recruit, Hire, Monitor and Train Community Health Workers: Guide for Local Health Departments

Course Objective

  • Describe the unique attributes of community health workers (CHWs)
  • List the core roles and competencies of CHWs
  • Define the importance of CHWs in driving public health improvements
  • Discuss ideas for integrating CHWs into public health departments

Date: June 30th, 2022

Subject Matter Expert:
Saehee Lee, MPH, CHES
Department of Sociomedical Sciences, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health


This course developed by the Region 2 Public Health Training Center (PHTC) aims to describe the integral role that community health workers (CHWs) can play in public health departments. After illustrating their unique attributes and core roles, the course goes on to discuss ideas for integration into public health departments. The module is designed for local health departments, population and community health organizations, and other relevant organizations.

Learners will be able to:

  1. Describe the unique attributes of community health workers (CHWs)
  2. List the core roles and competencies of CHWs
  3. Define the importance of CHWs in driving public health improvements
  4. Discuss ideas for integrating CHWs into public health departments
Commercial Determinants of Health : A New Framework for Improving Population Health and Reducing Health Inequities

Course Objective

  • Define commercial determinants  of health and explain the historical origins of this concept
  • Identify the  potential and limitations of the commercial determinants of health framework for development of more effective strategies to improve population health and reduce health inequities
  • Discuss key current needs for research, education  and practice on commercial determinants of health

Date: May 3rd, 2022

Presenter:
Nicholas Freudenberg, DrPH
Distinguished Professor of Public Health
CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy
Senior Faculty Fellow, CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute


In this month’s Log-in2Learn, Dr. Nicholas Freudenberg presents how the commercial determinants of health framework can help reduce health inequities, guided by the belief that another world is possible. He starts by defining commercial determinants of health and reviewing the cascade of public health crises that have happened in the 21st century. He goes over a framework that attributes this cascade and increases in stratification, inequality, and inequity to changes in 6 characteristics of capitalism. He then reviews the importance of changing corporate practices and political and economic structures that harm health, and lists key ideas and strategies that can help tackle that change. He finishes by providing specific examples of how public health professionals can build more alliances and move practice beyond business as usual, and answers questions from attendees.

Participants will be able t0:

  1. Define commercial determinants of health and explain the historical origins of this concept
  2. Identify the potential and limitations of the commercial determinants of health framework for development of more effective strategies to improve population health and reduce health inequities
  3. Discuss key current needs for research, education and practice on commercial determinants of health
Confronting Barriers to Vaccine Acceptance: The Role of Effective Communication

Course Objective

  • Discuss root causes of vaccine hesitancy and inequities among different groups
  • Describe the role of effective communication in promoting vaccine acceptance
  • Identify promising equity- and community-driven strategies to address barriers to vaccine acceptance during COVID-19 and beyond
  • Discuss examples, case studies, and action steps to strengthen local communication systems and promote vaccine acceptance

Date: April 5th, 2022

Subject Matter Expert:
Renata Schiavo, PhD, MA, CCL
Senior Lecturer, Department of Sociomedical Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University
Founder and Board President, Health Equity Initiative
Principal, Strategies for Equity and Communication Impact (SECI) 


This course developed by the Region 2 Public Health Training Center (PHTC) focuses on the role of effective communication in confronting barriers to vaccine acceptance. It discusses root causes of vaccine hesitancy and inequities among different groups and describes the role of effective communication in addressing such root causes, including a focus on equity- and community-driven strategies during COVID-19 and beyond. It also provides an overview of examples, case studies, best practices, and action steps to strengthen local communication systems and promote vaccine acceptance among a variety of groups.

Participants will learn how to:

  1. Discuss root causes of vaccine hesitancy and inequities among different groups
  2. Describe the role of effective communication in promoting vaccine acceptance
  3. Identify promising equity- and community-driven strategies to address barriers to vaccine acceptance during COVID-19 and beyond
  4. Discuss examples, case studies, and action steps to strengthen local communication systems and promote vaccine acceptance
Challenging Misinformation: Exploring Equity- and Community-Driven Strategies

Course Objective

  • Define terms such as “infodemic management”, and other current terminology as related to misinformation within a variety of interpersonal and media settings 
  • Discuss the link between misinformation, trust, and behavioral change, including issues surrounding the politicization of health information, historical reasons for mistrust among many groups, and the role of social media 
  • Describe promising equity-and community-driven strategies to: 
    • address misinformation 
    • build trust at the community and population levels  
    • strengthen communication systems to improve health, social, and policy outcomes 
  • Discuss relevant case studies and resource

Date: September 7th 2021

Presenter:
Renata Schiavo, PhD, MA, CCL
Senior Lecturer, Department of Sociomedical Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University
Founder and Board President, Health Equity Initiative
Principal, Strategies for Equity and Communication Impact (SECI)


In this month’s Log-In2Learn webinar, Dr. Renata Schiavo, PhD, MA, CCL, surveys evidence-based systems strategies for health professionals to challenge misinformation. She begins by reviewing socio-ecological models from the science of trust, emphasizing the importance of social, political and environmental factors. While acknowledging the new challenges posed by social media, which does not rely on peer-review or fact-checking processes, she reminds us that misinformation is older than the information age, going over historical reasons for mistrust such as the Tuskegee syphilis study. She defines an effective infodemic response, goes over 7 types of mis/dis-information as well as healthy information behaviors. This background leads to the paradigm shift to equity- and community-driven strategies, which Dr.Schiavo breaks down by priority and explains how to incorporate into health promotion programming.

Participants will learn how to:

  1. Define terms such as “infodemic management”, and other current terminology as related to misinformation within a variety of interpersonal and media settings 
  2. Discuss the link between misinformation, trust, and behavioral change, including issues surrounding the politicization of health information, historical reasons for mistrust among many groups, and the role of social media 
  3. Describe promising equity-and community-driven strategies to: address misinformation, build trust at the community and population levels , strengthen communication systems to improve health, social, and policy outcomes 
  4. Discuss relevant case studies and resource
Reducing Promotion and Consumption of Ultra-Processed Food

Course Objective

  • Define and explain the impact of ultra-processed food on human and planetary health
  • List factors that contribute to the ubiquity of ultra-processed foods
  • Describe how health professionals can raise public awareness of the harms of ultra-processed food via media literacy and social marketing
  • Identify at least two policy interventions to address misleading product packaging and unhealthy product formulations
  • Describe how taxation and regulation approaches can be used to combat ultra-processed food
  • Describe strategies to promote and subsidize healthy food and beverages, including tap water

Date: June 30th 2021

Subject Matter Experts: 
Nicholas Freudenberg, DrPH, MPH
Distinguished Professor of Public Health, CUNY Graduate School of Public Health and Health Policy & Director, CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute

Craig Willingham, MPH
Deputy Director, CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute

Erinn C. Bacchus, MPH
Doctoral Student, Community Health and Health Policy
Graduate Student Assistant, Healthy CUNY

Jessica Walsh, MPH
Assistant, CUNY School of Public Health


This two-part course developed by the Region 2 Public Health Training Center (PHTC) aims to understand ultra-processed food and explore how health departments can combat the promotion of ultra-processed food.

In Part I, we will develop a better understanding of ultra-processed food, and how it promotes negative health outcomes particularly for some populations.

In Part II, we will explore how health departments can combat the promotion of ultra-processed food.

Participants will be able to:

  1. Define and explain the impact of ultra-processed food on human and planetary health
  2. List factors that contribute to the ubiquity of ultra-processed foods
  3. Describe how health professionals can raise public awareness of the harms of ultra-processed food via media literacy and social marketing
  4. Identify at least two policy interventions to address misleading product packaging and unhealthy product formulations
  5. Describe how taxation and regulation approaches can be used to combat ultra-processed food
  6. Describe strategies to promote and subsidize healthy food and beverages, including tap water
Community Engagement: The People’s Approach to Improving Health and Social Outcomes

Course Objective

  • Define community engagement
  • Discuss why community engagement is critical in advancing health and social equity
  • Describe the role of local health departments (LHDs) in engaging local communities and their leaders in the design, implementation, and evaluation of health interventions and policies
  • List best practices, strategies, and participatory processes for community dialogue and engagement
  • Discuss ways to integrate community engagement in public health practice

Date: June 30th 2021

Subject  Matter Expert: 
Renata Schiavo, PhD, MA, CCL
Senior Lecturer, Department of Sociomedical Sciences, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University; Founder and Board President, Health Equity Initiative; Principal, Strategies for Equity and Communication Impact (SECI)


This course developed by the Region 2 Public Health Training Center (PHTC) focuses on community engagement, and the role of local health departments in engaging local communities. It focuses on strategies for “true” community engagement, which is about collaborating with and empowering local communities, and recognizing the expert in every community member and every leader representing the community. It also provides an overview of case studies, best practices and strategies for community dialogue and engagement and/or integrating community engagement in public health practice.

Participants will be able to:

  1. Define community engagement
  2. Discuss why community engagement is critical in advancing health and social equity
  3. Describe the role of local health departments (LHDs) in engaging local communities and their leaders in the design, implementation, and evaluation of health interventions and policies
  4. List best practices, strategies, and participatory processes for community dialogue and engagement
  5. Discuss ways to integrate community engagement in public health practice
A public health perspective on dismantling systemic racism: What role for health departments?

Course Objective

  • Explain why state and local health departments have the opportunity, mandate, capacity and imperative to take action to dismantle elements of systemic racism that harm health
  • Give examples of specific actions health departments can take to interrupt pathways by which racially disparate access to healthy food, criminal justice policies, and educational policies contribute to the health burdens of Black, Latinx, indigenous, and other populations of color.
  • Identify one or more ways that they can take action now within their institution to strengthen its actions designed to dismantle systemic racism

Date: September 1, 2020

Presenters
Nicholas Freudenberg, DrPH, MPH

Erinn Bacchus, MPH

Craig Willingham, MPH

City University of New York Urban Food Policy Institute


In this month’s Log-in2Learn, participants learn about three distinct approaches to address the intersections between public health and systemic racism in the United States. Dr. Nicholas Freudenburg, DrPH, MPH, discusses the relationship between the key determinants of health and racism and the need to end the inequitable provisions of education, housing and healthcare by creating communities of opportunity. Errin Bachhus, MPH, addresses racism in the criminal justice system and the role of public health organizations. In light of recent incidents of police brutality, she highlights the need to reevaluate the role of police departments and the best ways for health departments to intervene through programs and policy. Craig Willingham, MPH, examines how food policy can be crucial in increasing racial equity. He reviews the Good Food Purchasing Program and other city-wide efforts and shares how they can be targeted at minority groups to help alleviate inequities. Lastly, the speakers suggest a to-do list for public health organizations to actively make changes to current structures, provide creative examples to inspire action and recommend books to further broaden perspectives.

Participants will be able to:

  1. Explain why state and local health departments have the opportunity, mandate, capacity and imperative to take action to dismantle elements of systemic racism that harm health
  2. Give examples of specific actions health departments can take to interrupt pathways by which racially disparate access to healthy food, criminal justice policies, and educational policies contribute to the health burdens of Black, Latinx, indigenous, and other populations of color.
  3. Identify one or more ways that they can take action now within their institution to strengthen its actions designed to dismantle systemic racism.
Buprenorphine Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Course Objective

  • Explain regulatory updates regarding buprenorphine treatment during a public health emergency
  • Describe practice-level changes in buprenorphine treatment throughout COVID-19
  • Discuss common issues affecting patients in buprenorphine treatment during COVID-19

Date: July 7th, 2020

Presenter:
Tiffany Lu, MD, MS
Assistant Professor of Medicine
Montefiore Medical Center / Albert Einstein School of Medicine


In this month’s Log-in2Learn Dr. Tiffany Lu provides an overview of buprenorphine treatment prior to the COVID-19 pandemic and the challenges associated with treatment for opioid use disorder during the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr. Lu describes the communities hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and how the pandemic paved the way for regulation updates regarding buprenorphine treatment such as reduced restrictions and an increased use of telemedicine to treat opioid use disorders. The webinar also addresses some other measures put in place with buprenorphine treatment due to the public health emergency, including: longer prescriptions, halted urine drug testing (self reports), access to naloxone and harm reduction supplies. The presenter also shares available resources to support clinical providers as they face the challenges associated with buprenorphine treatment during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Participants will be able to:

  1. Explain regulatory updates regarding buprenorphine treatment during a public health emergency
  2. Describe practice-level changes in buprenorphine treatment throughout COVID-19
  3. Discuss common issues affecting patients in buprenorphine treatment during COVID-19
Region 2 Public Health Training Center