Penn State College of Medicine, Dickinson Law host ‘Summit on Health Justice’

Penn State College of Medicine and Penn State Dickinson Law and will host a Summit on Health Justice on Friday, Dec. 10, highlighting efforts to resolve health-related disparities in the U.S.

December 8, 2021Penn State College of Medicine News

The in-person summit is from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Penn State College of Medicine. Members of the Penn State community will join participants from Dickinson Law and the College of Medicine to discuss issues pertaining to inequalities in health and health care, and the related costs.

The Kaiser Family Foundation estimates inequalities in health and health care cost the U.S. $93 billion in excess medical care each year. An additional $42 billion is lost in productivity.

Achieving health equity requires putting intellectual resources toward addressing issues that contribute to health disparities, including poverty, unemployment, discrepancies in how patients of different races and ethnicities are treated, and more.

“The aim of the summit is to leverage the strength and expertise of multiple disciplines across the University network to uncover and unlock the educational, research and community impact opportunities of the complex challenges associated with health equity,” said Danielle Conway, Dickinson Law School Dean and Donald J. Farage Professor of Law.

The summit is geared to serve as a learning experience, bringing together faculty and students to discuss current programs at Dickinson Law and the College of Medicine and frame questions that both schools can explore together in the future.

“Health justice is a human right, and we stand united and committed to work together in addressing the racial, economic and myriad of other sociocultural factors that result in the severe inequities of health and health care that surround us. The Health Justice Summit is representative of the collaboration between Penn State College of Medicine and Penn State Dickinson Law to address these inequities via law, policy, science and health care,” said Dr. Kevin Black, interim dean, Penn State College of Medicine.

Dr. Philip Alberti, senior director of health equity research and policy at the Association of American Medical Colleges, will deliver the keynote address. His work focuses on eliminating health inequities and advocating for reforms.

The day will include short talks tackling critical subjects such as defining health justice, medical-legal partnerships, using science to address legal questions and community impact from a funding partnership with the city of Reading.

Throughout the day, participants will break into work groups to discuss existing resources within Penn State, and begin to identify short and long-term goals to address the most pressing needs of the communities served by Penn State.

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