USC: Rethinking Health Disparities

“If you want to change how medicine is provided, you have to change how it’s taught.”

Corinne Feldman, MMS, PA-C, University of Southern California Primary Care PA program director of didactic education

The University of Southern California Primary Care PA program is transforming health equity training. In this video, Corinne Feldman shares two unique programs designed to teach students how social determinants can shape our health and how to better understand health disparities within a community.

The first program, Trojan Trainer, pairs an unsheltered patient living in Los Angeles with a team of PA and medical students who work together for a year. In this program, the unsheltered individual trains the students on what it’s like to live in the intersections of social determinants of health. They work together on problems the patient is experiencing, and the students bring important resources such as companionship to doctor appointments, cell phone minutes, and internet access.

In the second program, PA students choose a county in Los Angeles and create a community-focused documentary that answers the question, “What does wellness and resilience look like in this community?”

Both programs were designed to take students past textbook knowledge – and what they thought they knew – into the realities that are right in front of them.

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