What is Public Health?
Public Health is the science of protecting and improving the health of communities through education, promotion of healthy lifestyles, and research for disease and injury prevention. Public Health involves the application of many different disciplines including:
- Public Policy
- Computer Science
Public Health is concerned with protecting the health of entire populations. These populations can be as small as a local neighborhood, or as big as an entire country.
Public Health professionals try to prevent problems from happening or re-occurring through implementing educational programs, developing policies, administering services, and conducting research, in contrast to clinical professional, such as doctors and nurses, who focus primarily on treating individuals after they become sick or injured.
What is the Impact of Public Health?
The dramatic achievements of Public Health in the 20th century have improved our quality of life: an increase in life expectancy, worldwide reduction in infant and child mortality, and the elimination or reduction of many communicable diseases.
Since 1900, the average life expectancy for Americans has increased by about 30 years. Over twenty-five of the 30 years can be accredited to Public Health initiatives, while medical advances account for less than four years.
Today, Public Health leaders continue to strengthen their roles as advocates for improved population-based health in an international, global community.