Prevention of Disease - Primary Prevention, Secondary Prevention, Tertiary Prevention, Prevention Research And Goals
health professionals reduce individuals
Prevention is better than cure.
Preventing disease involves a wide range of interrelated programs, actions, and activities. Some prevention measures are sweeping global policy initiatives, such as national and state government actions to reduce health risks by limiting air pollution and other toxic exposures or standards to assure the safety of food and water supplies. Others are focused efforts of public health professionals and agencies, such as the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of Disease Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the American Cancer Society, to reduce the incidence (occurrence of new cases) of specific diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, and lung cancer.
The effectiveness of global and local disease prevention programs largely depends on the extent to which individuals take personal responsibility for their own health by avoiding health risks such as tobacco use, substance abuse (misuse of alcohol and drugs), and unsafe sex. People who eat healthy diets; get adequate exercise and rest; wear seatbelts in automobiles and helmets on bikes, motorcycles, scooters, and the like; successfully manage stress; and maintain positive outlooks on life are on the front lines of disease prevention. Similarly, individuals who effectively use health care resources by obtaining recommended immunizations, physical examinations, and health screenings are actively working to prevent disease and disability.
Prevention involves governments, professional organizations, public health professionals, health care practitioners (physicians, nurses, and allied health professionals), and individuals working at three levels to maintain and improve the health of communities. One level, known as primary prevention, is inhibiting the development of disease before it occurs. Secondary prevention, also called "screening," refers to measures that detect disease before it is symptomatic. Tertiary prevention efforts focus on people already affected by disease and attempt to reduce resultant disability and restore functionality.
Primary prevention measures fall into two categories. The first category includes actions to protect against disease and disability, such as getting immunizations, ensuring the supply of safe drinking water, applying dental sealants to prevent tooth decay, and guarding against accidents. Examples of primary prevention of accidents include government and state requirements for workplace safety to p…
The goal of secondary prevention is to identify and detect disease in its earliest stages, before noticeable
TABLE 2.2 Possible settings for interventions to prevent youth violence
symptoms develop, when it is most likely to be treated successfully. With early detection and diagnosis, it may be possible to cure a disease, slow its progression, prevent or minimize complications, and limit d…
Tertiary prevention programs aim to improve the quality of life for people with various diseases by limiting
complications and disabilities, reducing the severity and progression of disease, and providing rehabilitation (therapy to restore functionality and self-sufficiency). Unlike primary and secondary prevention, tertiary prevention involves actual treatment for the disease and is conducted pr…
In 1986 Congress funded the first Prevention Research Centers. As of 2003, twenty-eight such centers were affiliated with medical schools or schools of public health. The centers explore and research a wide range of public health problems and test strategies to address those problems. Table 2.5 is a list of the Prevention Research Centers and the themes of research underway at each during 2003. Pr…
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