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What is public health The goals and values of public health - Essay Example

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What is public health The goals and values of public health

Personal health issues specific to an individual whereas those related to public health concern the community, society, and, at times, the entire human race. The definition is not that straightforward or compartmentalized though. For example, smoking is an issue of personal as well as public health importance. The difference lies in how an issue, disease, or concern is addressed that places it in one of the two categories. By smoking one places his or her personal health at risk. But considering research that show it as the largest contributor to preventable fatal diseases in the United States (Centers for Disease, 2002), it becomes an issue of greater public health significance. So, in essence, public health significance issues are those that affect the health of communities. They are not restricted to diseases alone and relate to creating an overall environment within which individuals can live a fulfilling and healthy life (Association of Schools, n.d.). The well-being of public can be pursued at the community, state, national, or global levels. Examples are global campaigns to eradicate polio, national campaigns to inform public about risks of smoking, inform public about advantages of physical exercise, etc. Issues of public health significance can also be attached a monetary value. For example, treatment of cardiovascular diseases costs billions of dollars in the U.S. every year. Information on prevention and promotion of a healthy lifestyle can reduce such costs.

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Summary

Personal health issues specific to an individual whereas those related to public health concern the community, society, and, at times, the entire human race. The definition is not that straightforward or compartmentalized though. …
What is public health The goals and values of public health
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