A long-standing connection has been established between social determinants of health and subsequent rates of illness and death. New York City is no exception to these findings despite its wealth and standing as the most famed city in the world. The City's overall health status and access to services remain disparate for many New Yorkers.
The City University of New York (CUNY) has a unique opportunity to address these health inequities among the residents of New York City and to work toward the achievement of health equity. With campuses in all five boroughs, CUNY has established itself as an integral component in the lives of individuals living in New York City. As such, with its wealth of academic resources, public health expertise, strong community relations and exceptional student body, CUNY is prepared to address the underpinnings of health inequities among New York City's urban poor and racial/ethnic populations.
The CUNY Institute for Health Equity (CIHE) was established to narrow the current gaps in the health status of New York City's underserved ethnic/racial populations. CIHE will work to identify and respond to the social determinants of health that contribute to the high rates of morbidity and mortality among these populations, and provide technical support to its community partners so that they may better serve their respective communities and educate public health students in the importance of addressing health equity. The knowledge obtained through CIHE's work will be analyzed, translated, and disseminated to the public so that these issues may be more effectively addressed.