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In order to address the effect of social conditions and poverty on health, the U.S. government has developed the social determinants of health, which are defined as “conditions in the environments in which people are born, live, learn, work, play, worship, and age that affect a wide range of health, functioning, and quality-of-life outcomes and risks.” These conditions include access to safe and affordable housing, healthy food, social support networks, educational and job opportunities, and public safety.

Federal and state governments operate social service programs that, although separate from publicly funded health care programs, help address the . . .

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