News tagged with public health

Related topics: children , health , centers for disease control and prevention , infectious diseases , physical activity

Disease without borders

In a paper published this week online in Global Society, researchers with University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and the Urban Studies and Planning Program, also at UC San Diego, present a bioregional guide ...

Sep 26, 2014
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Anti-addiction groups call for new FDA chief

Anti-addiction activists are calling for the Food and Drug Administration's top official to step down, saying the agency's policies have contributed to a national epidemic of prescription painkiller abuse.

Sep 24, 2014
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Public health

Public health is "the science and art of preventing disease, prolonging life and promoting health through the organized efforts and informed choices of society, organizations, public and private, communities and individuals." (1920, C.E.A. Winslow)[citation needed] It is concerned with threats to the overall health of a community based on population health analysis. The population in question can be as small as a handful of people or as large as all the inhabitants of several continents (for instance, in the case of a pandemic). Public health is typically divided into epidemiology, biostatistics and health services. Environmental, social, behavioral, and occupational health are also important subfields.

There are 2 distinct characteristics of public health:

1. It deals with preventive rather than curative aspects of health 2. It deals with population-level, rather than individual-level health issues

The focus of public health intervention is to prevent rather than treat a disease through surveillance of cases and the promotion of healthy behaviors. In addition to these activities, in many cases treating a disease may be vital to preventing it in others, such as during an outbreak of an infectious disease. Hand washing, vaccination programs and distribution of condoms are examples of public health measures.

The goal of public health is to improve lives through the prevention and treatment of disease. The United Nations' World Health Organization defines health as "a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity."

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