Beyond Do No Harm: Elevating BIPOC Voices in SDOH Interventions

Aug 4, 2021

When organizations in power undervalue lived expertise and community knowledge, which are often held in the BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) community, they run the risk of causing more harm than good in their social determinants of health (SDOH) interventions. This undervaluing and exclusion of the BIPOC community leads to interventions with a savior-designed approach — which is where institutional goals and objectives are prioritized over the betterment of the communities they seek to serve. BIPOC communities have both the lived experience and expertise to best identify and address the health and socioeconomic disparities caused by systemic racism and oppression. If organizations are truly committed to addressing the systemic barriers and root causes of inequity within the communities they serve, then SDOH interventions must include authentic community engagement and power and decision rights need to be shared with the BIPOC community.

In this webinar originally hosted on August 4, 2021 at 12:00 PM PT/3:00 PM ET, panelists discuss steps and strategies to better integrate BIPOC voice, especially lived experience, into SDOH interventions. The webinar also covered:

  • How the exclusion of BIPOC voices looks in the current state of SDOH interventions
  • The risk of normalizing the lack of inclusion of BIPOC voices, particularly those with lived experience, in SDOH interventions, especially tech-forward ones
  • Strategies to develop accountability structures to ensure BIPOC and marginalized community voice are truly integrated into SDOH interventions


  • Akilah Watkins, PhD, Chief Executive Officer and President, Center for Community Progress
  • Sonia Sarkar, DrPH, Director, Shift Health Accelerator
  • Gabriella Barbosa, JD, Managing Director of Policy, The Children’s Partnership
  • Artair Rogers, Director of Programs California, Health Leads (moderator)

Download Slides

Watch the Recording


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