Florida Public Health Review

Publication Date



Health disparities exist in Northeast Florida. Some locations experience morbidities at higher rates than others. Health zone 1 is a prime example. Differences in disease rates are interlaced with the social determinants of health, (SDOH). Long-standing social and structural influences of disparities are beyond the scope of Ryan White programs. However, empowerment for health promotion is a strategy for targeting health disparities. The Theory of Health Empowerment targets sense of agency and offers some leverage for helping people living with HIV/AIDS, (PLWHA) despite environments blemished by SDOH. Eclectic leadership occurring in a climate of respectful point-counter point discussions established the context for implemented projects in Northeast Florida. Nine activities directed efforts to reduce disparities. These activities are in the infancy stage of development. Some successes have been achieved, but much more remains to be accomplished to increase overall viral suppression above the 80% threshold. Directions for the future suggest that perhaps external influences of federal Ryan White Parts may be a catalyst for incentivizing the JTGA to participate in national efforts to reduce health disparities. Opportunities to strengthen understanding of approaches to nullify SDOH using science-based approaches hold promise to pursue health equity in treatment cascade outcomes for PLWHAs.