Public health and health promotion Essay Example

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9Public Health and Health Promotion

Public Health and Health Promotion

Public Health and Health Promotion


Diabetes Issues

Public health is a combination of science and art that aims to promote and protect the health and wellbeing of the people. The key element of fundamental social justice is the health quality since it justifies the collaboration between the state government and other agencies in a bid develop health policies that improve the health of the public regardless of their social status, gender, and ethnicity. To achieve these factors, it is important to promote a healthy lifestyle and protect people from infectious diseases and environmental hazards. In Australia, there are several health inequalities issues, which the states has put several measures to address these challenges. The major health issue affecting most people from Australia is diabetes. There is two aspects of the disease, type 1 and 2. Type 1 occurs whenever the body is in no position to produce any insulin while type 2 occurs when the body cannot produce adequate insulin (Mansfield and Smith, 2010, 193). The number of those affected with the disease continue to increase with the government putting adequate measures to remedy the prevailing conditions. In some cases, poor handling of the disease has resulted in heart failures, strokes, and blindness. Besides, most of the people with the disease are not aware of their conditions, as they tend to live normal lives with mild symptoms to display.

Diabetes is one of the major chronic diseases that threatens the lives of many Australians. There are frameworks that outline the action and set clear objects but do address the causes of the diseases. Through Diabetes Year of Care Programme, the healthcare professionals have been able to move shift from the paternal approach system to care planning that is a more personalized approach for those with long-term chronic conditions. Moreover, the approach involves integration of both health care professionals and patients who work jointly to prioritize the needs of the patients (Willis, Reynolds, and Keleher, 2012, 242). These personalized approaches to care programmes should be holistic and involves patients’ social circumstances to empower them and allow them take the central role in their healthcare. The approach also encourages the nurses and other social workers to work closely with those with diabetes in setting the goals that patients can work towards which includes the self-care practices. According to the Department of Health, planning care systems can ensure that most of the diabetic patients acquire quality and accessible healthcare.

In Austria, there are Diabetes Self-management Education programmes developed with an aim of educating and empowering the patients to have controls over their conditions through enhancing their knowledge and skills. Through such empowerments, the patients the patients can make informed choices, manage their conditions, and reduce the probability of the risk associated with diabetes. In addition, the education program aims to assist those living with diabetes to cope with their physical and mental conditions. However, the programme should be age appropriate and deliverable to individuals or groups. Other available programmes include Expert Patent Programme (EPP), which offers the necessary information, and skills required by those with diabetes to allow them to manage their diabetic care on their own. The strategy also offers those with diabetic conditions and opportunity to share their problems and solutions. Several pieces of literature suggest that these education practices would result in and empowered patients with the capacity to manage their problems.

Initially, it was the responsibility of the nursing team and other professionals to provide homecare services for the diabetic patients. However, such practices were only common when the treatment processes experienced certain complications that required adequate monitoring. These nurses were generalists with the capacity of providing the care and treatment to the patients’ wide array of conditions. As a result, they have no specialized disease knowledge. Due to inconsistency in delegating their responsibilities, the Department of Health established community matrons to ensure that the diabetic patients acquire first class service. The community matrons manage the care requirements of the patients to assist the patients to manage their long-term conditions, which theoretically helps to reduce the number of, admitted in the hospitals. Nevertheless, some studies indicate that the community matrons have not been able to reduce the number of people seeking admissions in the hospitals reflecting the level of ineffectiveness. Given time and adequate resources, the district nurses have the capacity to extend their roles and undertake the care for the housebound people suffering from diabetes in a satisfactory manner.

Mental and Substance Abuse

Another health issue facing Australians is the mental and substance use. There are several key health issues among the young teenagers. If these issues persist, then the constraints and distress that they present might last a long time. These problems often result in spiral dysfunction, which are difficult to remedy. In Australia, the mental illness rates are more prevalent among the younger people than other population groups and reflects the major burden of the disease affecting young people. Mental problems are preventable using appropriate early interventions, which the impacts are controllable through an earlier provision of appropriate services (Cleary, Jackson, and Hungerford, 2014, 35). Despite the efforts of most clinicians in Australia, there has been a plateau in the reform progress. Besides, there is underfunding of the mental health system. All the Australian government agencies have been able to recognize the need for properly coordinated national health and welfare services for those suffering from mental health and substance use problems. However, there has been insufficient investment, inadequate accountability, and changing healthcare needs that resulted in patch set of reforms.

The Australian government has put in place adequate policy and programme measures to address these problems. The Medicare-based scheme currently includes a suit of measures design effectively with an aim of enhancing the accessibility of appropriate and affordable forms of evidenced-based psychological care. Unfortunately, the system reverts to the traditional system that require individuals to pay some fees to access the services. In Australia, there are no requirements for the distribution of services geographically despites the numerous pieces of evidence of gross mal-distribution of specialists in mental health services. Due to inadequate care services, there have been increased suicide rates within the rural and regional communities. There are also some transformations taking place within the Australian primary care. Moreover, the GPs are currently increasing their skills, focusing on the provision of new-evidenced based mechanism and psychological treatments, and commencing on the emphasis to focus on long-term functional results rather than short-term relief symptoms (Bennett, 2009, 174). To embrace earlier intervention paradigms, there is need put much emphasize on an earlier presentation. The future management of these problems relies on the development of an effective and accessible youth-health and associated network within the primary. For the health issues associated with substance abuse, The National Campaign against Drug Abuse ensure that there are adequate measures to practice relevant treatment mechanism to prevent and protect the health of the affected populations.

Many programmes aim to address the mental health and substance abuse of the youths. Through identification of the existing programme, it might be easy to assist in understanding the available resources, knowledge, learning best practices. Moreover, the Australian government and other private sector agencies have been able to institutionalize some of the programmes to help curb the escalating rate of mental illness among the youth. The National Youth Mental Foundation provides support systems that ensure mental and wellbeing of the affected populations. Besides the support, the institution also offers information and services to the young people and their families across the country. Another institution funded by the Australian Government Department of Health and Aging is the Mind Matters. The organization brings together professionals to support the Australian secondary schools to promote and protect the mental health, emotional wellbeing, and social welfare of the members of the school communities. The Mindframe is also a government’s initiative programme that aimed at improving media reporting techniques on the mental health issues and provide accessibility to accurate information on mental illness. Besides, it has to ensure that the media portrays these issues in the news media within Australia. The Personal Assessment and Crises Evaluation (PACE) clinics provide treatment to young people identified as being at ultra-high risk positions. In this case, the treatment involves facilitated groups through adult learning principles based on the curriculum that address adolescent communication, conflict resolution, and adolescent development. The Gatehouse project in Australia was developed to improve programmes use within the secondary school environment. The project integrates professional training for the teachers and emotional competence curriculum from the students with an aim of making them change social development. There are several family partnership-training programmes within Australia incorporated into the maternal and child health and home visitor training.

International Health Issues

Internationally, the death rates emanating from the non-communicable diseases have been on the rise to cause heart failures, stroke, and injuries. Moreover, the deaths associated with infectious diseases like malaria, tuberculosis, and preventable diseases with vaccines have been on the decline. In most cases, the developing countries have the responsibility of dealing the dual burden: they have to continue preventing and controlling the disease while the same time addressing the health threats from the non-communicable diseases and environmental health risks (Twaddle, 2002, 252). With the changing social and economic conditions, the developing countries are struggling to manage their health systems. Moreover, the expansion of international trade also introduces new health risks. International communities are seeking better methods of confronting major health threats.

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) have been increasing globally. According to the World Health Organization, at least more than one million people acquire the diseases on a daily basis. These problems require immediate responses to control the number of people succumbing to the negative effects. The extent of the STDs and their effects on the families and communities acquired world recognition United Nations-sponsored International Conference on Population and Development in 1994. During such historic gathering, the policymakers vowed to focus on the reproductive and sexual health of the people as these emphases were to enable women, men, and young people lead healthy and reproductive. However, the major question was how organizations would meet their financial commitments to ensure that the people in dire need have accessibility to a full range of reproductive healthcare systems.

According to the WHO, the main response to the increasing level of STDs to focus on the counselling and behavioural approaches. Several factors influence individual risk behaviours. These strategies range from abstinence and limiting the sexual relations to long-term and monogamous partners. Moreover, much focus has also been on increasing the level of awareness and education interventions. Currently, many countries have sexual health education that targeting the youths and young adults (Hirsch, 2015). There are comprehensive education programmes, which are effective in changing the behaviours of the youths through a combination of learning on sexual risks and protection with factors, considered as non-sexual like building a health relationship. The programmes that address the diversity and provide accessibility to healthcare services can be more effective. For example, in most cases, the in-school educational programmes often dwells much on the needs of the girls. However, the programmes engaging the boys often encourage open discussions on sexual health matters are in most cases effective in building respectful relationship among the young generations.

International organizations are also encouraging the teens to abstain and reduce the number of sex partners. Abstinence from oral, vaginal, and unnecessary sex. For those undergoing the treatment, counselling encourages abstinence until the completion of medication. CDC encourages the application of the pre-exposure vaccination method, which is one of the most effective method used in preventing the transmission of the STDs.

The global strategies used in handling STD issues have two components: the technical and advocacy (CDC, 2015). The technical component deals with the methods used in promoting healthy sexual behaviour, encouraging protective barrier methods, and effective and accessible treatment for the STDs. The strategy also aims to upgrade monitoring and evaluation of STD control mechanism. However, much emphasis is often on the public health approach based on scientific evidence and cost-effectiveness. Advocacy section offers advice programmes to the management of the programmes on the approaches of mobilizing the high-level political commitment forming the important foundation of an accelerated response.


Bennett, D. 2009. Challenges in adolescent health. New York: Nova Science Publishers.

CDC, 2015. Sexually Transmitted Diseases Treatment Guidelines, 2010. [online] Available at: [Accessed 2 Dec. 2015].

Cleary, M., Jackson, D. and Hungerford, C. 2014. Mental Health Nursing in Australia: Resilience as a Means of Sustaining the Specialty.
Issues in Mental Health Nursing, 35(1), pp.33-40.

Hirsch, K. 2015. What Are Common Symptoms of Sexually Transmitted Diseases?. [online] Healthline. Available at: diseases [Accessed 2 Dec. 2015].

Mansfield, S. and Smith, S. 2010. Diabetes cookbook. Camberwell, Vic.: Dorling Kindersley.

Twaddle, A. 2002. Health care reform around the world. Westport, Conn.: Auburn House.

Willis, E., Reynolds, L. and Keleher, H. 2012. Understanding the Australian health care system. Chatswood, N.S.W.: Churchill Livingstone.