Health promotion is the process of addressing inequalities and enabling people to increase control over, and to improve, their health. It moves beyond a focus on individual behaviour towards a wide range of cross-cutting social and environmental interventions.
Components of public health promotion include:
- Gender, socio-economic status, age, ethnicity, disability, minority groups, geographical location.
- Includes progressive universalism at policy level and for structural and systems approaches.
- Targeting of high-risk populations.
- Reduce risk and promote healthy environments for the following areas: air, soil, food, water, sanitation, housing, noise, transport, rural and built environments, occupational health, and chemical, environmental, biological and radiation hazards.
- Emphasise co-benefits of climate change (link to climate change, sustainability and environmental health in health protection).
Social and economic determinants:
- Work with other sectors to reduce risk factors and develop health-enhancing environments, including across education, work, communities, non-governmental organisations, the private sector and local governments.
- At national level, target policies that reduce poverty and inequalities in income, and that build social assets, networks and capital.
Resilience: detect and address poor mental health and abuse early and develop emotional literacy skills to develop resilience, for example:
- Strengthen parenting skills, early treatment of ante-natal and post-natal depression, school-based emotional literacy, and violence and abuse prevention programmes.
- Community programmes for community resilience; alcohol and violence prevention; work-based mental health promotion programmes; volunteering and social participation for older people.
Behaviour and health literacy: develop individual skills and integrated community centred approaches to address risk factors and promote positive health behaviours, and support national policy and legislation, including in the following areas: tobacco, alcohol, drugs, sexual health, physical activity, injury prevention, healthy eating and oral health.
Life course: tailor approaches across the life course – including pre-natal, early years and maternal health, adolescence, adult and older years – reflecting demographic trends
Healthy settings: develop integrated approaches for different settings, including hospitals and healthcare settings, towns and cities, communities, prisons, schools and workplaces.