Community health promotion
The Department Of Public Health in various states has done very little to put up constructive community health programs. The society expects the government (both county and central governments) to take charge of such programs but this has not always been the case. In most cases, county governments have very limited resources and therefore usually prefer to allocate these meager resources in curative programs rather than preventative one.
1. Examine three programs offered by the health department in your area to determine if the programs focus on primary, secondary, or tertiary prevention. Give an example of each.
In California, USA non governmental organizations like churches, private institutions and the general have taken the initiative to mobilize resources and channel them in constructive and sustainable community health promotion programs. Unlike other states, the department of public health has done a good work in promoting community health programs. A good example of such a program is the Network for a Healthy California which is managed by the Public Health Institute. The main objective of this program is to encourage poor people with low income to consume fruits and vegetables as well as create time for daily exercise. By doing this, low income earners are prevented from falling victims of diseases like cancer, obesity, diabetes or diseases of the heart which are chronic (Kathleen, 2011).
The program was established in order to respond to high frequency of the chronic diseases among the low income earners. Executors of the program have come up with a kit called California Fit Business Kit which is given to employers who hire low wage earners to use the kit for implementation and maintenance of health feeding tradition as well as physical exercise at the place of work among their employees.
The program can be found with all employers in California. Through the program, employees, employers and communities are encouraged to create conducive environment at the place of work for physical exercise and availability of health foods. In addition, the program also works with employers in supporting initiatives that promote lifestyle choices which are health like discouraging smoking. The program also helps to create policies that promote health living with special emphasize for work sites because people spend most of their times at their places of work and not at home (Woodruff, 1995).
This program focuses on primary preventative initiatives because by encouraging health people to take regular exercise and health eating with a lot of emphasize on vegetables and fruits, chronic diseases like cancer or heart ailments can be easily be kept at bay. The program also distributes materials with information on how to avoid sexually transmitted diseases and the need to go for early treatment incase of early infection. Once such diseases are prevented especially among low income earners, there meager resources can be channeled to other self promoting needs like education. Such like people are also likely to be more productive in their work because of improved healthy.
Another program run by the department of health of California is the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. The program executes several projects which run concurrently. However, a good example of a project they run which aims at promoting health living Network to Protect the Disabled. This project mainly focuses at empowering disabled people by involving them actively in programs which prevent lifestyle diseases and activities which encourage emergency responses. A part from California, the program is also supported by federal governments of over 18 states in US. Generally, the program seeks to get rid of obstacles which prevent disabled people from taking part in activities of recreation, socializing, civic education by improving the standards health care at community and national level.
This program focuses on secondary prevention because it deals members of the society which is already struggling to overcome barriers to conventional health care programs. a part from just educating the disabled about importance of health nutrition, exercise and avoiding substance abuse, the program also carries out frequent immunization to subjects aimed at preventing hepatitis A and B.
The third program run by the Department of Public Health of California is the Say No to Drugs Campaign which is administered by the National Council against Drug Abuse. The program targets young people and adolescents of high school and college going age and educates the group about the importance of staying away from drugs especially those commonly abused by youths like cigarettes and alcohol. The program organizes sports and group events which engages youths actively and utilizes their energy is in the program activities. The program usually is supported by celebrities who endorse the activities. Celebrities not only encourage young people to attend and participate in group activities but also encourage young people to work hard at school and in sports. Many young people targeted by the program are also in their age bracket when they have started or are already sexually active. The program therefore educates young people on how to avoid Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) and unwanted early pregnancies (Pawanexh, 2008).
The program is therefore a tertiary prevention because it deals with a group which is more vulnerable to peer group influence but can stay health by getting proper education responsible sexuality and dangers of drug abuse.
2. Examine a current issue of a parenting magazine (found on the internet, market). What percent of the magazine promotes healthy choices for parents?
The Parents magazine of October (it is published once every month) found in the market is relevant to this question. In its title ‘Best Ever Birthday Guide for Children’ a birth day party with heath foods for young children is highlighted. A part from the traditional cake, the author of the article emphasizes on why it is important to include more fruit juice, vegetable and roughage which are prepared appropriately to make a delicacy. The author emphasizes the children participation in preparation of the party, especially the fruit juice. This will make the children to be able to create their own juice at home and school and this encourages consumption of fruits, vegetable and whole food by the children, even in the absence of parents or teachers (Goodman, 2005).
Though the level of prevention in the entire magazine of health living is very low, the article is an illustration that the magazine is sensitive to issues of health living and has creed space in its pages to emphasize the role of parents as role models for health living. In the whole magazine the percentage of health choice is very little ranging between 3-6 percent and this appears only in the article ‘Best Ever Birthday for Children’ written by Rachel Wanjiru and published on 1st October 2012.
3. Search the NSC Library or internet for an article on some aspect of Health Promotion. Provide a synopsis of the article, its significance to health promotion and your thoughts about the article. Include the author(s), publication and date.
There is an article by Marie Bronx, NY titled ‘I chose to smoke; this is what I cost me’. In the article Miss Bronx highlights the dangers of smoking and she includes high risk to developing cancer, still births for pregnant mothers, dependency, loss of body organs among other problems associated with smoking. To emphasize everything in the article, she has posted a photo with her hands missing some of her fingers. She also looks older than her real age.
It is a very important article to both non smokers and smokers. The article triggers thought for people to rethink their attitudes about smoking. It can encourage smokers to quit smoking before they suffer the consequences and can make non smokers not to indulge in such like a habit which has no benefit to their health (Warne, 2005).
Personally, I think as much as the article is very provocative, it encourages change of attitude to people about cigarette smoking and tobacco in general. It can even make governments to create legislation to limit smoking among its citizen. The article simply emphasizes the point that the risks associated with smoking are more harmful than the revenue government get through taxation. More of such articles should be written accompanied with pictures. This will encourage health living by making smokers to quit and non smokers never to think of doing it. The end result will be a health nation and resources required for treating people with diseases related to smoking will be channeled to other more beneficial programs.
Kathleen, M. (2011). Cigarette Butts as Litter—Toxic as Well as Ugly. Kessinger: Kessinger Publishing.
Woodruff, S. (1995). Secrets of Fat-Free Cooking : Over 150 Fat-Free and Low-Fat Recipes from Breakfast to Dinner-Appetizers to Desserts. Garden City Park, N.Y: Avery Publishing Group
Pawanexh, K. (2008), Why Cold Chain for Vegetables in Fruits and Vegetables Post-Harvest Care: The Basics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Warne, M.(2005). "Variation in, and Causes of, Toxicity of Cigarette Butts to a Cladoceran and Microtox". Archives of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology. 50 (2): 205–212.
Goodman, J. (1993). Tobacco in history: the cultures of dependence. New York: Routledge.