We recently co-hosted a community dialogue with the Social Justice Learning Institute and State Senator Holly Mitchell. Theforum is part of a larger strategy to understand community attitudes about health, in particular sugary drinks and access to dialysis centers.
Presenters included our very own Los Angeles Division Board Member, Jessica Sims M.D., who started the conversation on chronic health conditions and Emergency Services. As Dr. Sims indicated in her talk, the solution to addressing chronic health conditions exists within every community, but we need policy leaders to take the lead in creating change. The dialogue was moderated by Senator Mitchell, who candidly shared her firsthand knowledge of the struggle for ideal health faced by many in communities of color. Senator Mitchell shared that for many folks, access to healthy options are limited; poor community design, family history of chronic disease and personal choice all play a role in health.
The consensus of the dialogue included the guidance that: we need to address and invest in prevention; we must continue to educate ourselves about health; we must focus on social determinants of health; and working together we can elevate communities to champion change for better health outcomes.
The forum was one of many taking place throughout the state to better understand how policy approaches can change our relationship with sugar and impact heart health. Would you like to join us for our next event or get involved locally? Please email Josh.Brown@heart.org to get started!
Pictured is Senator Holly Mitchell addressing the group.