Centers of Excellence
Disparities: Social Determinants of Health
Social Determinants of Health and Healthcare Disparities Within Urology
Welcome to UroToday’s new Center of Excellence on Disparities: Social Determinants of Health. I am honored to serve as its Editor and excited to share new research and expert conversations with you. The World Health Organization and the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention define social determinants of health (SDOH) not as individual variables, but as the environments in which people are born, grow, learn, work, play, and age.1,2 Specific characteristics of these environments can either increase or reduce disparities in health, healthcare access, and quality of life among individuals, regions, and nations. This Center focuses on SDOH and healthcare disparities within urology, particularly genitourinary (GU) oncology. However, it is important to emphasize that SDOH affects all persons and all healthcare fields in a multitude of ways, and therefore, many topics covered by this Center will appeal to a broad audience. In this editorial, I outline the current status of GU research on SDOH and disparities, how experts are redefining SDOH and downstream effects in order to improve research and policy, and why it is crucial to engage medically underserved communities in these efforts.
Samuel L. Washington III, MD, MAS Dr. Washington moved from Texas to California to complete his undergraduate education at University of California, Davis with a Bachelors of Science in Genetics, and a minor in Latin. He completed his medical school training at University of California, San Francisco and was selected by the Department of Urology to complete his urology residency. He stayed on at UCSF to complete his urologic oncology fellowship and a Master’s Degree in Clinical Research. In July 2020, Dr. Washington joined the faculty as an Assistant Professor in the Departments of Urology and Epidemiology & Biostatistics.
He served as a urologic oncologist and faculty within the Department of Urology at University of California, San Francisco. His primary research focuses on racial disparities in patients with genitourinary malignancies, with specific interests in understanding racial/ethnic disparities in diagnosis, management, and treatment and examining and how these differences in treatment strategies based on race and socioeconomic factors impact survival outcomes for patients with GU cancers.