The three levels of health promotion and prevention are primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention education. Primary health care promotion focuses on making individuals, families, and communities aware of health related issues and provides education on alternatives for a healthy lifestyle. Secondary health care promotion provides the screening necessary to identify health problems and provides information on changes that can be made to reduce the risk of chronic health problems. Tertiary promotion of health care focuses on management of the chronic disease, so that a greater quality of life can be obtained.
Health promotion should support commitment and modification in the individuals, families, and communities encouraging them to be constructive with the changes that will promote healthy behaviors for a life time as well as improving the literacy of health. The World Health Organization defines health promotion as the process of enabling people to increase control over, and to improve their health. The purpose of health promotion is to provide people with information that will enable them to make educated and informed decisions about their health.
According to Bennett (2009), there are five approaches to promoting health: medical, behavioral, educational, empowerment and social change. The medical approach centers itself on the treatment and prevention of illness while behavior change uses persuasive education and facilitation to assist patients to make healthy lifestyle choices. The educational approach respects a patient’s right to make an informed choice. The empowerment approach is a patient centered approach where the patient identifies their own learning needs to gain the knowledge and skills required to make a change and social change focuses is on a society not an individual.
It is also recommended that a health needs assessment be done in the region of focus to provide the proper health tools to address the health care concerns of that area. The role and responsibility of the nurse in health promotion is to provide the individual, family, or community with an organized and comprehensive path leading to a healthier lifestyle. Considerations for the nurse in this role should include prioritizing the needs of the individual, family, or community and providing information that will encourage change and a better understanding of health.
Allowing the patient to make decisions in the management of their own care through promotion of self care, at any level, will promote the health and well being of a patient. When providing planned health promotion and educational material to a patient, the education should support their self care needs and assist the patient to a sustained lifestyle change. Health screening along with comprehensive information on the choices needed to prevent progression to a chronic illness will allow the patient to feel more in control over their choices.
Continuation of care after discharge from a hospital setting is usually done by community nurses who will specialize in the management of long term conditions such as chronic kidney, pulmonary and cardiac disease. The ultimate goal is to provide continuous care for patients who are discharged from hospitals and allow them to recover in their homes as well as educating the patient and families on health promotion and disease prevention (Chow, Wong, Chan, Chung, Chang, & Lee, 2008).
Implementation of health promotion must be a well thought out plan, taking into account the social, economical and educational needs of the individuals, families and the communities. The needs could differ for each demographical area being considered for health care promotion. Incorporating support from local organizations could provide areas in which the screening, teaching and planning of health promotion can take place. Involving local practitioners in the implementation of the health promotion process might encourage some members of the community to seek out health care when they normally would not.
Having an alliance with the public sector to effect change can be more outward looking as it involves actively seeking and valuing the views of the community in planning health promotion activity (Paniagua, Reilly, Evans, & Bond, 2011). Planning and implementing health promotion must also take into account the willingness of the participants to embrace their health care needs and make the changes necessary. Strong incentives to alter their behavior, as they are generally already aware of their limitation and do not necessarily need this reinforced (Paniagua et al., 2011).
The changing needs of health care puts a larger emphisis on prevention and promotion of health care. Swiadek (2009) remarks in her article that she believes that the needed changes in health care will be achieved naturally as nation wide nursing efforts pivot toward community based and public health nursing. Early screening and intervention will benefit individuals, families, and communities by enabling them to take control of their health and producing a foundation that they can live by as well as provide them with the necessary resources to make changes.
As the principles and practices of health promotion move forward, it could possibly reduce the cost of the health care delivery system in the future by reshaping the value a person puts on their health. References Bennett, C. , Perry, J. , & Lawrence, Z. (2009). Promoting health in primary care. Nursing Standard, 23 (47) , 48-56. Retrieved for EBSCOhost. Chow, S. , Wong, F. , Chan, T. , Chung, L. , Chang, K. , & Lee, R. (2008). Community nursing services for post dischareg chronically ill patients. Journal of Nursing & Healthcare of Chronic Illnesses, 17 (7B) , 260-271. Retrieved from EBSCOhost.
Paniagua, H. , Reilly, C. , Evans, J. , & Bond, P. (2011). Driving health promotion into the community: an initiative evaluated. British Journal of Nursing (BJN), 20 (14) , 862-865. Retrieved form EBSCOhost. Swiadek, J. (2009). The impact of healthcare issues on the future of the nursing profession: the resulting increased influence of community-based and public health nursing. Nursing Forum, 44 (1). doi :10. 1111/j. 1744-6198. 2009. 00123. x , 19-24. World Health Organization. (n. d. ). Retrieved October 10, 2011, from Health Promotion: http://www. whoint/topics/health_promotion/en/