For physicians, and indeed for all health workers, promoting health for all is a clear social responsibility. The United States devotes enormous resources to medical care, well over 50% more per person than any other nation — yet it ranks 45th in the world in life expectancy and 33rd in infant mortality.
There is a fundamental crisis of health and human rights in south Los Angeles. South L.A. has the poorest health outcomes and indicators in the County of Los Angeles‚ mirroring the health status in some developing nations. Homelessness, slum housing, violence, food disparity and lack of resources reflect the underlying epidemic in the social determinants of poor health.