Social Determinants of Health - Programs - Eskenazi Health

Eskenazi Health has been committed to addressing social determinants of health affecting the patients and communities it serves for more than 160 years. In addition to providing high-quality, cost-effective health care to residents of Marion County and Central Indiana, Eskenazi Health continues to support social factors that have been proven to be essential in health and well-being.

In Indianapolis, 16 miles equals 16 years. That’s the difference in life expectancy between different neighborhoods in our city. Eskenazi Health's goal is to increase life expectancy for neighborhood residents by addressing systemic barriers to health in specific neighborhoods. Research shows that up to 80% of health outcomes stem from factors in homes, schools, jobs and communities. Health equity means that every person has a fair and just chance to be healthy, unencumbered by obstacles to health like racism and other forms of discrimination, poverty, and their consequences. Addressing these drivers of inequality in a focused and place-based way can help improve health and opportunity for all.

  • Health Equity Zones

    Health equity zones are defined areas where Eskenazi Health and community partners work together to focus on building healthy neighborhoods by addressing long-term social determinants of health, with the goal of increasing the life expectancy of area residents. The health equity zone initiative was launched at three Eskenazi Health Center sites: Eskenazi Health Center West 38th Street – International Marketplace, Eskenazi Health Thomas & Arlene Grande Campus – Northeast Corridor and Eskenazi Health Center Grassy Creek – Far Eastside. Together with neighborhood residents and community partners, a collaborative community plan will be implemented to address immediate and systematic barriers through a holistic and all-encompassing approach to improve the following:

    • Food as medicine: eating healthy and nutritious food
    • Mental health and wellness: fostering resilience and a healthy mindset
    • Community health: creating the conditions for healthy living
    • Transportation and connectivity: connecting health, education and employment
    • Housing: supporting quality affordable and safe housing
    • Community connectedness: building social capital and connection
    • Economic opportunity: creating pathways to economic self-sufficiency
    • Safety: living free of violence, including intimate partner violence and child abuse


    To learn more about or donate to this initiative, please visit

  • Community Health Workers and Weavers

    Eskenazi Health community health workers meet one-on-one with patients at designated Eskenazi Health Center locations and patient homes to enhance an individual’s understanding and adherence to treatment protocols, identify potential social determinants of health and help patients set and achieve their self-management goals. During their time with patients, community health workers conduct welfare or safety checks, distribute medical supplies, assist with blood pressure or blood sugar checks, and educate patients on vaccines.

    Eskenazi Health community weavers work in the communities around Eskenazi Health Center locations to link neighbors to health care and community resources. Community weavers seek to address the health of entire neighborhoods and communities. 

  • Life Balance

    Life Balance, in partnership with New Wineskin Ministries and UnitedHealthcare, is a seven-week program. Participants meet for monthly workshops on financial wellness, nutrition education and stress management techniques. Eskenazi Health community health workers provide dedicated support and connect participants and their families to needed resources.

    The program is currently offered in the International Marketplace health equity zone. To learn more, please watch this informational video or call 317.880.1411.

  • Food as Medicine

    Healthy, nutritious food can be key in preventing chronic illnesses. Eskenazi Health offers a variety of programs and services, including the Eskenazi Health Fresh for You Market, that help its patients and community eliminate barriers in obtaining healthy food.

    To learn more about these offerings, please visit the Food as Medicine page.

headingtoline link-1-arrow minus next-arrow plus prev-arrrow radio-off select-icons radio-on