When it comes to improving the health of a community, you often must look at influences outside the doctor’s office. Environmental conditions in communities — called social determinants of health — can be more impactful than clinical factors. And no environment is more important than your home. That is why during 2021, CVS Health invested nearly $185 million in creating affordable housing in underserved communities across the U.S., supporting more than 6,500 housing units.
Safe, stable and affordable housing is a critical cornerstone of CVS Health’s Health Zones strategy because not only does housing directly impact health, it also impacts our ability to target other critical health factors. Without a permanent address, finding a stable job is much more difficult. Food insecurity is much higher for individuals on waiting lists for affordable housinghttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3079041/ versus those who have secured such housing. And homelessness is known to both cause and exacerbate existing health issueshttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK218236/, and complicate treatments.