Health Promotion

As defined by the World Health Organization, health promotion is the process by which people can be enabled so that the control they have over their health can be increased and they can play a role in the improvement of health. It is a stream of behavioural science which utilizes information from biological, environmental, psychological, physical and medical sciences such that health can be promoted. It is used not only for the prevention of the illness but also improves the health by the method of promotion. As per the latest definition of health which includes the holistic concept of health and health is no longer an individual responsibility but it has been made a state responsibility. Health promotion reflecting this is the action that is taken by individual, group, institution, the community in a strategic way so that the knowledge about health, attitude and behaviour can be changed for improvement. As a part of health promotion, there are various factors which are to be considered like socioeconomic conditions, family patterns, societies and global factors.

The concept is not a novel one but it was brought to the limelight by the Alma Ata declaration and the in Ottawa charter the components of health promotion was given. Health promotion helps in the improvement of health status not only of the person but also of the community, states and eventually nation. It can help in enhancing the quality of life and reduce the disease burden in terms of morbidity and mortality. Health promotion involves three basic components and they are to enable, meditate and advocate. In the Ottawa charter, there was the identification of five key action areas and they are building healthy public policy, creating supportive environments, strengthening community action, developing personal skills and reorientation of health services and these are represented in the form of logo.

Reflection: The concept of health promotion as described in Ottawa charter even after thirty years is still the most accepted. There are three main models of health promotion which has influenced the concept of health promotion. The models are biomedical, social and ecological model. The first is related to only the health of the person or community such that the factors which affect the health of a person. The second includes social factors like social inequities like accessibility and affordability. The last model is the one in which is related to the relationship of the individual in the community and other ecosystems present.

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