Holly Oh, MD, Chief Medical Officer, The Dimock Center in Boston
Learning Objectives: At the end of this activity, you will be able to:
- Summarize how patients’ financial difficulties can lead to problems with their health.
- Discuss the role social inequities play in health care today.
- Explain how one patient encounter can inspire a clinician to think about a community’s needs.
Description: Holly Oh, a pediatrician at The Dimock Center in Boston, looks back on a memorable patient encounter from almost a decade ago. A young male, complaining of cold symptoms, reminded her that health care is only part of the conversation when discussing a patient's well-being and quality of life. It's important, she explains, to look beyond the symptoms to understand the real health of a patient — and a population.
- What do you think was going through Dr. Oh’s mind as she stood with her hand on the doorknob ready to leave for her Thanksgiving holiday?
- How would you define population health?
- Why is it important for clinicians to think beyond the patient they are caring for at the moment?
- How can socioeconomic issues affect a patient’s health?
- Can you provide an example from your local area of how a community resource is improving health?