Addressing the social determinants of rural health
Most of us know that if we eat too much junk food, have too much alcohol, smoke, don't get enough fruit and vegetables or don't exercise we will get very sick.
What is less well know is that things like where we live, our access to educational opportunities and the availability of rewarding jobs also has a really big impact on our physical and mental wellbeing.
In fact, it has been estimated that 80 percent of the causes of poor health stem from where we live, how we live and what we consume. Only 20 percent is a direct result of access to clinical care.
Understanding and addressing the social determinants of health has been found to significantly reduce levels of disease in the community, and significantly reduce government spending on health and welfare.