The Practice of Public Health

The issue of public health is one of the most important questions as it involves the wellbeing and health of every individual. Public health is a science and art because it is based on traditional medicine and healthcare issues but requires a personalized approach to every citizen. It is important to recognize that different approaches to health may also have a direct influence on behavior. Thus, for instance, by influencing the amount of effort medical professionals to expend, and by influencing an individual’s persistence in the face of barriers, self-care and health promotions may also have a direct impact on individual behavior. It should also be recognized that behavioral performance can influence one or more persons (Edelman and Mandle, 2005).

Acheson is right in stating that public health is art and science because people may form a positive intention to sustain health conditions, and may in fact perform a given behavior, at least in part because they believe that performance of the behavior will lead to positively valued outcomes. When people do not lead a healthy lifestyle, however, this outcome may not occur. Obviously, the health promotions will influence the person’s behavioral beliefs (or expectations), which may impact intentions and future behavioral patterns. As becomes clear later, health outcomes are necessary for developing measures of behavioral beliefs or result expectancies; relevant referents are necessary for developing normative measures; barriers and facilitators are essential for assessing both environmental constraints and self-efficacy, and individual characteristics are necessary for assessing self-image and violations of self-standards (Sheinfeld-Gorin and Arnold, 2005).

Disease prevention and health promotions are based on the personal characteristics of the target audience and the unique needs of every patient. In some satiations, differences between action alternatives identified by the population and those identified by medical professionals provide important information. Furthermore, responses to these issues provide insight into skills that may be required to attain that goal. Public health is an art because the variety of coping processes is enormous (Maville and Huerta, 2003). They range from short-term health promotion actions such as using one or another of the vast number of over-the-counter treatments to participation in one of many procedures for the disease prevention or early detection of cancer or cardiovascular disease, to repetitive and longer-term medical preventions such as obtaining an annual check-up, adopting a low-fat diet, avoiding danger by quitting smoking, or adopting any of the wide variety of medical preventions used for months and years to minimize dysfunction and live with an incurable, chronic condition. It seems likely that the unexpected variety of coping strategies is due in part to the perception that different, specific procedures are needed to deal with particular threats (McKenzie et al, 2008).

In sum, Acheson is right stating that public health is both art and science. Health care seeking increases for vague and vague symptoms and becomes apparent when the stressor is of several weeks duration; when the stressor onset is recent, care-seeking is minimal as the symptoms are attributed to stress rather than to illness. Emotional health procedures, in the form of rules (e.g., the stress-illness rule and the upset-serious rule) alter the meaning or depiction of somatic events and the procedures generated by them. The main health promotion, though, is the unwarranted assumption that life stress will produce a simple main effect, such that high levels of stress increase decisions to seek health care promotions. The task of public health promotion is to minimize life stressors from different effects and help a person to maintain a healthy lifestyle depending on the nature of the individual’s preferences and health conditions.


  1. Edelman, C. l. Mandle, C. l. 2005, Health Promotion Throughout the Life Span Elsevier/Mosby; 6 edition.
  2. Maville , J.A. Huerta, C.G. 2003, Health Promotion in Nursing. Thomson Delmar Learning; 2 edition.
  3. McKenzie, j. F., Neiger, B.L.,Thackeray, R. 2008, Planning, Implementing, and Evaluating Health Promotion Programs: A Primer. Benjamin Cummings; 5 edition.
  4. Sheinfeld-Gorin, S., Arnold, J. 2005, Health Promotion in Practice. ossey-Bass; 1 edition.
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