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Eradicate Social Isolation

Recent research has demonstrated that social isolation is as dangerous to human health as smoking.

Yet it does not receive nearly the same level of attention from the public, healthcare practitioners or

policymakers. As such, the Grand Challenge to Eradicate Social Isolation has set out to educate the

public, disseminate evidence-based practices, and advocate for policy reform, looking to deepen social

connections for people of all ages.

During the past five years, network members have been studying, publishing, and presenting widely on

social isolation in diverse populations and across the lifespan. In 2020, with the onset of the COVID -19

pandemic and the imposition of social distancing measures to slow its spread, social isolation has reached

crisis levels. In response, members of this Grand Challenge have sprung into action, launching new

programs, delivering webinars, publishing articles, and conducting a survey on the implications of social

distancing for mental health and well-being.

18 | Progress and Plans for the Grand Challenges

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