The Changing Face of Disease: Implications for Society

By Nick Mascie-Taylor; Jean Peters et al. | Go to book overview

11

The public's health

The changing role of public health

Jean Peters


Introduction

Public health is the science and art of promoting, protecting, and improving health and well-being through organised efforts of society (Department of Health 1988). This chapter provides an overview of how the determinants of health, and consequently disease profiles, have changed over time in terms of emphasis and influence, and what role public health has, and can play, sometimes with government intervention, to maximise the public's health given these changes.

Health and disease can be considered as two extremes of a continuum. However, since in general it has proved difficult to produce a definition of 'health' with measurable outcomes, biologists, anthropologists, health care professionals, and researchers have tended to focus on factors that indicate absence of health, illhealth, degrees of ill-health, or actual disease state. The classic definition of health is that proposed by the World Health Organisation in 1948: 'Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease'. This definition, however, is not very helpful as not only does it describe an ideal state rarely attained in the real world, it also does not provide any clear measurable factors with which to assess if such a state has been achieved. The definition of Stokes et al. (1982) is a more helpful one as it acknowledges those aspects of health that can be measured: 'Health is a state characterised by anatomical integrity, ability to perform personally valued family, work and community roles; ability to deal with physical, biologic, and social stress; a feeling of well-being; and freedom from the risk of disease and ultimately death'. From this definition it can be inferred that disease compromises anatomical integrity, limits performance, can be physically or mentally impeding and possibly fatal, all factors with measurable outcomes. Being able to measure health or disease is important if health is seen as important among the objectives and values of most individuals, and such individuals expect governments and administrations to pursue policies that will give them the opportunity to live a healthy life of optimum duration and quality. Alternatively, or in addition, the governments and other administrations themselves regard attainment of health or maintenance of a healthy population as important, for whatever reason.

-170-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
The Changing Face of Disease: Implications for Society
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 208

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.