Park's Textbook of Preventive and Social Medicine

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Cover of the 18th edition of Park's Textbook
Park's Textbook of Preventive and Social Medicine is the most widely used textbook for teaching the subject of preventive and social medicine or community medicine in India and other South Asian countries. The textbook was originally authored by J.E.Park, who was a professor of preventive and social medicine in Madhya Pradesh and later in Libya. Recent editions have been edited by his son K. Park who is trained as a surgeon. The textbook was first published in 1970 and has been regularly updated every 2-3 years. It is published by Banarsidas Bhanot Publishers located in Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh. The latest edition is the 21st edition published in 2011.

The textbook is recommended for both undergraduate medical and dental students and also for postgraduate students specializing in community medicine and public health. The topics covered in the book are in accordance with the curriculum suggested by the Medical Council of India for undergraduate medical education. The latest edition has 23 chapters including: Man and Medicine: Towards Health for all, Concepts of Health and Disease, Principles of Epidemiology and Epidemiological Methods, Epidemiology of Communicable Diseases, Epidemiology of Non-Communicable Diseases, Health Programmes in India, Essential and Counterfeit Medicines, Demography and Family Planning, Preventive Medicine in Obstetrics, Paediatrics and Geriatrics, Nutrition and Health, Medical and Social Sciences, Environment and Health, Hospital Waste Management, Disaster Management, Occupational Health, Genetics and Health, Mental Health, Health Information and Basic Medical Statistics, Communication for Health Education, Health Planning and Management, Health Care of the Community and International Health. It remains the most comprehensive source of information on the epidemiology of communicable and non-communicable diseases as well as national health programs in India.

Critical reviews of the books have pointed out that issues such as gender have been inadequately addressed[1][2]. A critique on the Environment and Health chapter has also been written [3].


  1. Bhate, K. & Acharya, S., 2005. Preventive and Social Medicine: Practitioner’s Review of Gender Content. Economic And Political Weekly, 40(18), pp.1870-1875.
  2. Prakash, P., 2005. Where Is the Woman in Preventive and Social Medicine ? Sociological Perspectives. Economic And Political Weekly, 40(18), pp.1828-1834.
  3. Citation needed

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