Pathways Recommendation

Screen all children and families for at-risk circumstances and social determinants of health and connect them to appropriate services. Screens should include risk factors, such as Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), trauma, poverty, and homelessness, and protective factors, such as capacity to recover from difficulties (resilience), social connections and supports, knowledge of parenting and child development, and children’s social and emotional health.

Pathways Action Map > Expectation 2: Community Context Action 2.1: Screen Children and Families for Social Determinants of Health and Connect them to Appropriate Services

Why This Matters

Social determinants or drivers of health (SDOH) are the conditions in which people are born, grow, live, work, and age.1  They have a strong influence on children’s health, development, and school success. In particular, children living in families with low income face many obstacles to early literacy, such as parental unemployment, housing instability, inadequate nutrition, and toxic stress. Screening for SDOH helps to identify child and family needs and strengths in these areas, and facilitate connections to formal and informal supports.

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