Health Promotion

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Health promotion is the process of enabling people to increase control over, and to improve, their health. It moves beyond a focus on individual behavior towards a wide range of social and environmental interventions.Therefore health Promotion is not just the responsibility of Health Sector, but goes beyond healthy life styles to well being.

Therefore health promotion represents a comprehensive social and political process, it not only embraces actions directed at strengthening the skills and capabilities of individuals, but also action directed towards changing social, environmental and economic conditions. As a result participation becomes an essential feature to sustain health promotion action.

It places health at the centre of the broad development agenda, address the underlying determinants of health, and helps strengthen sustainable health systems. It acknowledges that societal transformation as a result of population growth and urbanization together with environmental and other changes is often accelerated by globalization in trade and communication, and complex emergencies, thereby calls for approaches to address the broader determinants of health.

Health promotion looks at prerequisite conditions and resources for health, the basic strategies for promoting health are 1. advocating for policy support and investment in the development of health systems and services that support health promotion and risk prevention; 2. fostering health-supportive environments and integrated approaches to public health services; 3. strengthening the sustainable financing and evidence base required for health promotion; 4. increasing the knowledge base for tackling the broad determinants of health.

These strategies are supported by priority action areas outlined in health promotion charter, strategies and action areas is further defined in the Health Promotion Glossary .

Compiled from Nutbeam, D., Health Promotion Glossary, WHO/HPR/HEP/98.1, Geneva, World Health Organization, 1998 and* WHO-Health Promotion

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