OT and Social Determinants of Health

Earn 1 hour of continuing education by joining the OT Potential Club after listening to this OT Potential Podcast course on OT and Social Determinants of Health.

OT and Social Determinants of Health with Joy Doll

It’s no secret that our healthcare systems are built to react to sickness and health events—not to keep people healthy in the first place. 

If we want to get serious about producing health for our patients, we have to start shifting our healthcare system to address social determinants of health.  

But, how is such a seismic shift even possible—and what’s your role as an occupational therapy practitioner in this new era?

In this one hour course, we will look at a journal article with a proposal for mobilizing our hospital systems to address social determinants of health. 

Then, I am thrilled to be joined by Joy Doll, an OT who has been working on the front lines of addressing SDOH. She will share her insights into the movement that is already happening, and how occupational therapists can be involved.

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Example OT Potential Club podcast course certificate.
Earn 1 hour of continuing education

1. Listen to the podcast for free.

2. Sign up for the OT Potential Club.

3. Pass the quiz and download your certificate!

Primary Journal Article Explored

When you log in, be sure to check out the OT Potential Club’s written breakdown of the following research article. Then, share your questions and thoughts with fellow practitioners.

Berwick, D. M. (2022). Getting serious about producing health. JAMA, 327(19), 1865.   

Supporting Research and Journal Articles

Hammell, K. W. (2021). Social and structural determinants of Health: Exploring Occupational therapy’s structural (in)competence. Canadian Journal of Occupational Therapy, 88(4), 365–374.

Sokol, R., Austin, A., Chandler, C., Byrum, E., Bousquette, J., Lancaster, C., Doss, G., Dotson, A., Urbaeva, V., Singichetti, B., Brevard, K., Wright, S. T., Lanier, P., &; Shanahan, M. (2022). Screening children for social determinants of health: A systematic review. Pediatric Collections: Social Determinants of Health (Part 3: Promoting Health Equity), 29–42.

Learning Objectives

  • You will be able to recognize the categories of social determinants health & the foundational factor for addressing them. 
  • You will be able to identify ways social determinants of health that can be addressed by OTs. 


Intro (5 minutes)

Breakdown and analysis of journal article (5 minutes)

  • What are social determinants of health
  • The global problem of under-investment in SDOH
  • The culpability of the healthcare industry
  • How could hospitals actually produce health?
  • How to build on the work that is already happening
  • Addressing potential objections
  • Conclusion
  • Takeaways for OT practitioners

Discussion on practical implications for OTs (with Joy Doll) (50 minutes)

  • Can you tell me how you first found OT?
  • How did you become interested in social determinants of health?
  • How do you personally describe social determinants of health to people?
  • What were your initial impressions of the article?
  • I loved the article, but wanted to argue with the premise that hospitals should be and must be the ones to lead us forward in this. Did you agree with this?
  • The article outlines the Ten Teams. Do you know any hospitals with teams like the ones described?
  • What can OTs who work in traditional settling be doing to get involved in addressing SDOH? 
  • What do you see as possible avenues for OT to be involved in this work full-time- and how should OT interested in this get started?
  • I think every OT should be following developments in our understanding of SDOH- where can we do that?

Contact Hours

1 hour (0.1 AOTA CEUs). Released online from Aurora, NE.

This course on OT and Social Determinants of Health is AOTA approved!

Target Audience/Educational Level

Our target audience is occupational therapy practitioners who are looking to learn about OT and Social Determinants of Health.  The educational level is introductory.

Instructional Methods/Registration/Special Needs Requests/Cancellation Policy

This course is an independent/self-study course delivered via podcast on iTunes, Spotify and Google Play. Explore your listening options on the OT Potential Podcast page.

If you need accommodations to take this course, please contact us and we will address your needs on an individual basis.

If this course were to be canceled, please see our cancellation policy on our terms page.

Course Completion Requirements

In order to receive a certificate for this course, you must first listen to the podcast in its entirety. Then, you will need to take the test (found at the top of this page) and earn 75% or higher. If you pass, a certificate will be automatically generated and sent to your email.

Financial and Non-financial Disclosures

It is the policy of OT Potential to disclose any financial and non-financial interest the provider or instructor may have in a product or service mentioned during an activity. This is to ensure that the audience is made aware of any bias of the speaker.

We here at OT Potential have no financial stake in this topic.  Our guest, Joy Doll, also has no financial disclosures. 


Joy Doll, OTD, OTR/L, FNAP

Joy Doll, OTD, OTR/L, FNAP

Joy Doll is the Vice President of Community Programs for CyncHealth. In this role, Joy supports cross-sector partnerships to build a social determinants of health ecosystem that includes community based organizations, health information technology and health care organizations. She led the first EHR integration of health care and social care in the state of Nebraska. She is a passionate advocate for health equity supporting programs like the Health and Dwelling, a Medical Respite for the Homeless and the Greater Omaha Pathways Hub. 

Prior to joining CyncHealth, Joy served as the Inaugural Executive Director for establishing the Center for Interprofessional Education and Research (CIPER) where she was engaged with CHI Health to develop, establish and study an interprofessional clinical learning environment.  She was the Vice Chair of the Department of Occupational Therapy in the School of Pharmacy and Health Professions at Creighton University. During her time at the CU, she was also the director of a Post Professional OTD Program where she was responsible for recruitment and retention of students, managing student issues, and maintaining program excellence.

Currently, Joy is still an Associate Clinical Professor of Occupational Therapy at Creighton University where she gives guest lectures and designed a course on health informatics. She is author of the textbook Grant Writing and Program Development for Occupational Therapy Practitioners: Making the Connection and over 50 book chapters or peer reviewed journal publications. She is a sought after speaker including the 2018 TedX Talk entitled Cultivating Collaboration in Health Care: The Journey of an Accidental Expert. Joy earned her Doctor of Occupational Therapy degree in 2003 from Creighton University. In May 2022, she completed a miniMBA from University of Arizona as a recipient of the CommonSprit Equity Impact Scholarship.

Sarah Lyon, OTR/L

Sarah Lyon, OTR/L

Sarah’s passion is helping fellow OT practitioners translate evidence into daily practice. Sarah earned her BA in religion from St. Olaf College, then earned her master’s degree in occupational therapy from New York University in 2011. Since then, she’s worked in numerous facilities, including a critical access hospital, an acute trauma hospital, and a state inpatient psychiatric hospital.

Sarah is the founder/owner of OT Potential. Read more about OT Potential here.

This course was designed to meet your continuing education requirements

We designed the courses in the Club to meet the requirements for “online” and “independent/self-study” courses. For more details read our blog post: Can I earn OT CEUS from a podcast? To verify the requirements from your specific state (within the US), check out our post, OT Continuing Education Explained. If you are outside of the United States and have questions, please contact us.

We are proud to be an AOTA Approved Provider and to meet the requirements for your NBCOT renewal.

We are AOTA approved!!
We report course results to CE Broker every 24 hours!
Works for NBCOT PDUs!

See our other OT courses!

  • Cancer Rehab for Older Adults
  • OT & Smart Home Tech Adoption
  • Anti-racist OT Praxis
  • Racism and Occupation
  • OT and Social Determinants of Health
  • Participation-focused Knowledge Translation in Pediatric OT

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