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About this book

If you are looking for the definitive short guide to the theory and practice of health promotion, then you need look no further.

Written by a leading international expert, this concise text offers, for the first time, a comprehensive explanation of key concepts, terms and definitions used in health promotion. Glenn Laverack explains over 70 key concepts and many other guiding principles, theoretical models and approaches that frame health promotion. He also explains the many tools and strategies that enable practitioners to work more effectively.

This handy sourcebook has been written by the author in a typically accessible style that will provide readers with a superb overview of the subject. Numerous cross-references signpost the connections between different ideas, allowing you to explore conceptual relationships and linked approaches in an order that suits the reader.

Whether you are studying, training or are already working, this book will be an indispensable source of information, evidence and analysis for deepening your understanding and for extending your practice.

A companion source book in the same series, entitled the 'A to Z of Public Health', is intended to further extend the range of definitions and terms.

Table of Contents

A

Advocacy

Abstract
Advocacy involves people acting on behalf of themselves or on behalf of others to argue a position and to influence the outcome of decisions. In health promotion practice, advocacy initiatives are usually started to support particular causes, interest groups and ideologies (Smithies and Webster, 1998).
Glenn Laverack

Alliances, Partnerships and Coalitions

Abstract
An alliance is a relationship between two or more parties (individuals, groups, communities or organizations) to pursue a set of agreed upon goals, while remaining independent. The main purpose is to enable themselves, or that of others, to increase control over their lives and to improve health, going beyond health care (Jones, Sidell and Douglas, 2002). Members of the alliance provide different resources such as funding, equipment, knowledge, technology transfer, expertise or intellectual property. An alliance is therefore a collaboration that aims for a synergy where each partner’s benefits are greater than those from their individual efforts. For example, to avoid facing unheated homes in the United Kingdom in winter, some communities have created alliances to purchase heating oil at cheaper prices and this has had a mutual cost benefit to all members. Alliances have two-way benefits, are participatory and in health promotion agencies do not merely consult with people but fully engage others in decision making. The structure and function of partnerships and coalitions overlap with alliances, although each has its own distinct characteristics (Laverack, 2013).
Glenn Laverack

Approaches

Abstract
Health promotion approaches help to better understand the different ways of working in practice as it is unlikely that any one theory or model can be applied to fulfil the requirements of a programme (Naidoo and Wills, 2009).
Glenn Laverack

B

Behaviour Change Communication

Abstract
Behaviour change communication is an intervention to promote positive health behaviours that are appropriate to people’s settings (UNDP, 2002).
Glenn Laverack

Bottom-Up and Top-Down

Abstract
The way in which health concerns are to be addressed and are defined in a health promotion programme can take two distinct forms: bottom-up and top-down. A bottom-up approach encourages the community to identify its own problems and communicates these to those (above) who often have decision making authority (Laverack, 2004). In contrast, top-down describes programmes where problem identification comes from those in top structures ‘down’ to the community.
Glenn Laverack

Boycotts

Abstract
A boycott is an act of voluntarily abstaining from using, buying or dealing with a person, organization or product as an expression of protest, usually for political reasons (Metoyer, 2007).
Glenn Laverack

C

Civil Society

Abstract
Civil society includes people in both their social and professional contexts who share a common set of interests or concerns, including the totality of voluntary civic and social organizations and institutions and which form the basis of a functioning society (Putnam, 1993).
Glenn Laverack

Community

Abstract
It is important to think beyond the customary view of a community as a place where people live, for example, a neighbourhood, because these are often just an aggregate of non-connected people. Communities have both a social and a geographic characteristic and consist of heterogeneous individuals with dynamic relations that sometimes organize into groups to take action towards achieving shared goals (Laverack, 2004).
Glenn Laverack

Community-Based Intervention

Abstract
Community-based interventions are designed to work with people to address their needs. They can help practitioners to better engage with, organize and mobilize communities. They can also help practitioners to appreciate the role that they have in facilitating community participation, action and empowerment in their everyday work (Laverack, 2007).
Glenn Laverack

Community Capacity Building

Abstract
Community capacity building is the increase in community groups’ abilities to define, assess, analyse and act on health (or any other) concerns of importance to their members (Labonte and Laverack, 200Ia, p. 114). Generally, it is viewed as a process that increases the assets and attributes that a community is able to draw upon (Goodman et al., 1998).
Glenn Laverack

Competencies

Abstract
Competencies are a combination of attributes including knowledge, skills and values that enable an individual to perform a set of tasks to an appropriate standard for the practice of health promotion (Dempsey, Battel-Kirk and Barry, 2011).
Glenn Laverack

Conflict Resolution

Abstract
Conflict resolution are the methods and processes involved in facilitating the peaceful ending of conflict by individuals or group members by actively communicating information about their conflicting motives or ideologies to others and by engaging in collective negotiation (Forsyth, 2009).
Glenn Laverack

Counselling and One-to-One Communication

Abstract
Counselling refers to any form of interaction where someone seeks to explore, understand or resolve a problem or a troubling personal aspect of their life. Counselling occurs broadly when a person consults someone else with regard to a problem, conflict or dilemma that is preventing them from living their lives in a way that they would wish to do so (McLeod and McLeod, 2011, p. I).
Glenn Laverack

Critical Consciousness

Abstract
Critical consciousness can be described as ‘... the ability to reflect on the assumptions underlying our and others’ ideas and actions and to contemplate alternative ways of living’ (Goodman et al., 1998, p. 272).
Glenn Laverack

D

Declarations and Statements

Abstract
For many years the WHO has provided the global direction and leadership that has helped to shape the way we view health promotion. This has been marked by key international declarations and statements that have helped to map, define and legitimize new approaches to health promotion theory and practice. The WHO has had a significant role in orchestrating these milestones through its international convening powers, even though as an organization its role and influence in health promotion has diminished in recent years because of global financial constraints (Laverack, 2o12a).
Glenn Laverack

Definition

Abstract
Health promotion is a contested concept and there is no singularly accepted definition. However, it can be regarded ‘to represent a comprehensive social and political process, embracing actions directed at strengthening the skills and capabilities of individuals, and actions directed at changing social, environmental and economic conditions so as to alleviate their impact on health’ (WHO, 1998, p. 1).
Glenn Laverack

Determinants of Health

Abstract
The determinants of health encompass the economic and social conditions that influence the health of individuals, communities and populations. The social determinants of health are the conditions in which people are born, grow, live, work and age, circumstances that are shaped by the distribution of money, power and resources and which are themselves influenced by policy choices (WHO, 2008).
Glenn Laverack

Disease Prevention

Abstract
Disease prevention covers measures not only to prevent the occurrence of disease but also to arrest its progress and reduce its consequences once established. Disease prevention deals with individuals and populations identified as exhibiting identifiable risk factors, often associated with different risk behaviours (WHO, 1998, p. 4).
Glenn Laverack

E

Empowerment

Abstract
Empowerment in the broadest sense is ‘…the process by which disadvantaged people work together to increase control over events that determine their lives’ (Werner, 1988, p. 1).
Glenn Laverack

Ethics

Abstract
Ethics is a branch of philosophy dealing with distinctions between right and wrong, and with the moral consequences of human actions. Much of modern ethical thinking is based on the concepts of human rights, individual freedom and autonomy, and on doing good and not harming (PHAC, 2013).
Glenn Laverack

Evaluation

Abstract
Health promotion evaluation is an assessment of the extent to which health promotion actions achieve a valued outcome (WHO, 1998. p. 12).
Glenn Laverack

Evidence-Based Practice

Abstract
Evidence-based health promotion practice specifically refers to ‘the development, implementation, and evaluation of effective programmes and policies through application of evidence, including systematic appraisal of research and appropriate use of programme planning models’ (NSW Government, 2013).
Glenn Laverack

F

Foundations

Abstract
The development of Health Promotion Foundations has been an innovative way of mobilizing new resources for promoting health, to support research and to strengthen links with other sectors including education, sport, the arts and the environment. Health Promotion Foundations are essentially organizations that not only have unique features but that also share a number of common characteristics:
1.
Health Promotion Foundations are established according to some form of legislation that defi nes their role in terms of its functions, objectives and powers and provides a recurrent budget.
 
2.
Health Promotion Foundations are governed by an independent Board of Governance that comprise stakeholder representation and usually a mix of government and nongovernment organizations (NGOs), for example, representation from government or people with expertise in health and other sectors. Board members may also be nominated for their expertise in marketing, finance, community development or research.
 
3.
Staff coordinating the activities of the Health Promotion Foundation are organized in teams or areas according to health promotion topics, for example, healthy body weight team, or roles, for example, grant and sponsorship.
 
4.
Health Promotion Foundations promote health by working with and across many sectors and levels of society.
 
5.
Health Promotion Foundations are not aligned with any one political group.
 
Glenn Laverack

G

Gender and Health

Abstract
SEE ALSO advocacy; boycotts; health social movements; power; powerlessness; pressure groups The term ‘gender’ includes both masculinity and femininity. Being a man or a woman has a significant impact on health, as a result of biological and gender-related differences and factors such as poverty and powerlessness. Gender mainstreaming is an acknowledgement that gender equality is best achieved by integrating women’s and men’s health concerns aimed at improving health (WHO, 2013a).
Glenn Laverack

Global Health

Abstract
Global health describes the entire population of the world including all nations with a cultural and territorial identity, states, as the political organizations of these nations, multi-national organizations and academic institutions involved with the production of knowledge related to global health issues (Parker and Sommer, 2011).
Glenn Laverack

H

Harm Reduction

Abstract
Harm reduction is a pragmatic approach to reduce the harmful consequences of high-risk behaviours by incorporating strategies that cover safer use, managed use and abstinence (Ritter and Cameron, 2006).
Glenn Laverack

Health Activism

Abstract
Health activism involves a challenge to the existing order whenever it is perceived to influence peoples’ health negatively or has led to an injustice or an inequity (Plows, 2007).
Glenn Laverack

Health and Wellbeing

Abstract
There is a multiplicity of meanings assigned to our understandings of health. In particular, it is useful to consider the distinction outlined below between official understandings, those used by health professionals, and lay understandings, the more popular perceptions held by those who are usually the recipients of health interventions.
Glenn Laverack

Health Education

Abstract
While there is no universally accepted definition of health education, the term is traditionally regarded to represent planned opportunities for people to learn about health and to make changes to their behaviour (Naidoo and Wills, 2009, p. 58).
Glenn Laverack

Health Literacy

Abstract
Health literacy is a repackaging of the relationship between health education and empowerment and evolved as a concept within health promotion. Health education becomes more than just the transmission of information and is focussed on skills development and confidence so as to help others to make informed decisions that will allow them to exert greater control on their lives and health (Renkert and Nutbeam, 2001).
Glenn Laverack

Health Profiles

Abstract
Health profiles are a summary of health information for a particular population, for example, for a country, and then further sub-divided into regions, provinces, towns and local communities (Network of Public Health Observatories, 2013).
Glenn Laverack

Health Protection

Abstract
Health protection is a term to describe activities to ensure safe food and water supplies, providing advice to national food and drug safety regulators, protecting people from environmental threats and having a regulatory framework for controlling infectious diseases (PHAC, 2013).
Glenn Laverack

Healthy Public Policy

Abstract
Healthy public policy covers a range of activities and decisions that cut across a number of different sectors, for example, housing, transport and employment, and that influence quality of life, wellbeing and health (Baum, 2008).
Glenn Laverack

Health Social Movements

Abstract
Health social movements challenge state, institutional and other forms of authority to give the public more of a voice in health policy and regulation (Brown and Zavestoski, 2004). More broadly, a social movement can be defined as a sustained and organized public effort targeting authorities that can use both conventional and unconventional strategies to achieve its goals (Tilly, 2004).
Glenn Laverack

Hegemonic Power

Abstract
Hegemonic power is that form of power-over that is invisible and internalized such that it is structured into our everyday lives and taken for granted (Foucault, 1979).
Glenn Laverack

Hygiene Promotion

Abstract
Hygiene promotion is a planned approach to preventing communicable diseases, especially diarrhoeal diseases, through the widespread adoption of safe hygiene practices. Hygiene promotion encourages all the hygienic conditions and behaviours that can contribute towards good health (Appleton and Sijbesma, 2005).
Glenn Laverack

I

Individualism and Health

Abstract
Individualism is an ideology that holds people responsible for their own actions and the consequences that these may have. Individualism refers to the ability of a person to make fully autonomous choices to take control of their lives and health (Tengland, 2007).
Glenn Laverack

Information and Communication Technology

Abstract
Information and Communication Technology (ICT) is a general term for the integration of telecommunications, computers, software and audio-visuals that enables users to create, access, store, transmit and manipulate information. The term ICT is also commonly used to refer to the merging of telecommunications with computer networks through a single link system (Rohlinger and Brown, 2009).
Glenn Laverack

Information, Education and Communication

Abstract
Information, education and communication (IEC) is an approach that is based on the need to make all concerned more effective communicators by using a mix of appropriate channels (Hubley, Copeman and Woodall, 2013).
Glenn Laverack

Injury Prevention

Abstract
Injury prevention is an effort to prevent or reduce the severity of bodily injuries caused by external mechanisms, before they occur, to improve the health of the population (Pless and Hagel, 2005). Injury is a leading cause of death and disability including most significantly, from road traffic injuries. Injuries have two main divisions: intentional and unintentional. Intentional injury includes homicide in all forms: war, violence, terrorism, abuse and suicide.
Glenn Laverack

L

Lay Epidemiology

Abstract
Lay epidemiology describes the processes by which people in their everyday life understand and interpret risks (Allmark and Tod, 2006), including risks to their health and wellbeing.
Glenn Laverack

Leadership

Abstract
Leadership can be described as a process of social influence in which one person can enlist the aid and support of others in the accomplishment of a shared task and is often seen as somebody whom people follow, who guides or directs others (Chemers, 1997).
Glenn Laverack

Leverage

Abstract
Leverage occurs when people bring more varied experience, widespread contacts and a longer track record than others, and this additional input can be seen as advantageous to lever or gain greater influence. More specifically, leverage refers to the ability to influence people or events to get things done (Rathgeber, 2009).
Glenn Laverack

Life Skills

Abstract
Life skills are abilities for adaptive and positive behaviour that enable individuals to deal effectively with the demands and challenges of everyday life. Life skills consist of personal, inter-personal, cognitive and physical skills, which enable people to control and direct their lives and to develop the capacity to live with and produce change in their environment (WHO, 1998, p. 15).
Glenn Laverack

Lifespan Approach

Abstract
The lifespan approach to health promotion focuses on how our needs and bodies change throughout our lives. The approach is based on providing appropriate interventions at the different stages of a person’s lifespan to promote health and wellbeing (Hubley, Copeman and Woodall, 2013).
Glenn Laverack

Lifestyle Approach

Abstract
A lifestyle approach is a way of living based on identifiable patterns of behaviour that are determined by the interplay between an individual’s personal characteristics, social interactions and socioeconomic and environmental living conditions (WHO, 1998, p. 16).
Glenn Laverack

Lobbying

Abstract
Lobbying is an attempt to influence official decisions through the direct and personal communication between a lobbyist and the policymaker (McGrath, 2007a).
Glenn Laverack

M

Marginalization

Abstract
Marginalization is a process by which an individual or a group of individuals are denied access to, or positions of, economic, religious and political power within a society (Marshall, 1998).
Glenn Laverack

Media

Abstract
The media refers collectively to technologies that are intended to reach a large audience via mass communication including printed materials, radio, television and the internet (Laverack, 2013).
Glenn Laverack

Mental Health Promotion

Abstract
Mental health promotion involves actions to create conditions that support and maintain healthy lifestyles including mental health (WHO, 2001).
Glenn Laverack

Moral Suasion

Abstract
Moral suasion is the act of trying to use moral principles to influence individuals and groups to change their practices, beliefs and actions (Laverack, 2013, p. 148).
Glenn Laverack

N

Needs Assessment

Abstract
Needs assessment can be defined as a process that is used to identify the needs reported by an individual or group (Gilmore, 2011). More specifically, a health needs assessment is a systematic procedure for determining the unmet health and health care needs of a population, the causes and contributing factors to those needs and the human, organizational and community resources, which are available to respond to these needs (Wright, 2001).
Glenn Laverack

Networks

Abstract
Networks set a context within groups, formal organizations and institutions for those who work in or are served by them, which, in turn, affects what people do, how they feel and what happens to them (Wright, 1997).
Glenn Laverack

P

Parallel-Tracking

Abstract
Parallel-tracking is a planning framework that uses a multi-stage approach to view the top-down and bottom-up tensions in health promotion programming in a uniquely different way (Laverack, 2007, P. 47).
Glenn Laverack

Patient Empowerment

Abstract
Patient empowerment includes enabling individuals to take control of their own health, wellbeing and disease management and participate in decisions affecting their care. Patient empowerment is also about respecting patients’ rights, giving them a‘voice’ so that they can actively and collectively participate in making health systems more user friendly and information more accessible (The Lancet, 2012).
Glenn Laverack

Peer Education

Abstract
Peer education is an approach in which people are supported to promote health-enhancing change among their peers. Rather than health professionals educating members of the public, lay persons are felt to be in the best position to encourage healthy behaviour to each other (Kelly et al., 1992).
Glenn Laverack

Photo-Voice

Abstract
Photo-voice is a tool to enable people to identify, represent and enhance their community through a specific photographic technique. It entrusts cameras to people to enable them to act as recorders and potential catalysts for social action and change, in their own communities (Photo-voice, 2013).
Glenn Laverack

Political Activity

Abstract
Health promotion is, or should be, a political activity, as many of its actions have political consequences for those in the society in which it occurs. Health promotion actions, for example, attempt to influence people at an individual, civic and political level with regard to the development of health-related legislation and policy. Health promotion aims at enabling others to take more control of their lives, health and its determinants through social, economic and political change. To be more politically effective, practitioners must fully understand the sources of their own power and how this can be used to help to empower others (Laverack, 2004). Political ideology too influences who is responsible for health (the individual or the state) and as a consequence who is responsible for regulating behaviour and behaviour change (Dixey et al., 2013).
Glenn Laverack

Power

Abstract
The common interpretation of power is simply as ‘… the capacity of some to produce intended and foreseen effects on others’ (Wrong, 1988, p. 2).
Glenn Laverack

Powerlessness

Abstract
Powerlessness, or the absence of power, whether imagined or real is a concept with the expectancy that the behaviour of a person or group cannot determine the outcomes they seek (Kieffer, 1984).
Glenn Laverack

Pressure Groups

Abstract
Pressure groups are commonly formed on the basis of the interests of their members such as professional or community-based organizations and are based on a particular cause. The common aim of pressure groups is to change the opinions and attitudes of society and to influence the policy-making process, but not to govern (Young and Everritt, 2004).
Glenn Laverack

Primary Health Care

Abstract
Primary health care is essential health care made accessible at a cost a country and/or community can afford, with methods that are practical, scientifically sound and socially acceptable (WHO, 1978).
Glenn Laverack

Public Health

Abstract
Public health is an approach that aims to promote health, prevent disease, treat illnesses, prolong valued life, care for the infirm and to provide health services. Traditionally, such goals have been used to curb the spread of infectious diseases and to protect the wellbeing of the general population, while others see a much greater role in regulation and reducing inequalities in health (Baggott, 2010).
Glenn Laverack

R

Risk Factors

Abstract
Risk factors refer to social, economic or biological status, behaviours or environments that are associated with or cause increased susceptibility to a specific disease, ill health or injury. Once risk factors have been identified, they can become the entry point or focus for health promotion strategies and actions (WHO, 1998, p. 18).
Glenn Laverack

S

Salutogenesis

Abstract
Salutogenesis describes an approach focusing on factors that support human health and wellbeing, rather than on factors that cause disease. More specifically, the salutogenic approach is concerned with the relationship between health, stress and coping (Antonovsky, 1979).
Glenn Laverack

Screening

Abstract
Screening interventions are designed to identify disease early, thus enabling prevention management and treatment to reduce mortality from both communicable and chronic diseases including breast, prostate and cervical cancer, diabetes and osteoporosis (Raffle and Muir Gray, 2007).
Glenn Laverack

Self-Help Groups

Abstract
Self-help groups organize around a specific problem such as ‘Weight Watchers’. Group members have a shared knowledge and interest in the problem, are supportive to one another and are often managed by the participants their own activities (Laverack, 2009, p. 70).
Glenn Laverack

Settings

Abstract
SEE ALSO approaches; civil society; healthy public policy; public health; risk factors A setting is a place or social context in which people engage in daily activities and in which environmental, organizational and personal factors interact to affect health and wellbeing (WHO, 1998, p. 19).
Glenn Laverack

Social Justice

Abstract
Social justice can be defined as justice that is exercised within a society. A socially just society is one based on the principles of equality, equity and solidarity and one that both values and practices human rights as well as recognizing the dignity of every human being (Zajda, Majhanovich and Rust, 2006).
Glenn Laverack

Social Marketing

Abstract
Social marketing reflects commercial sector marketing technologies applied to social and health problems that are then resolved by behaviour change (Andreasen, 1995).
Glenn Laverack

T

Theory and Models

Abstract
Theory is systematically organized knowledge applicable in a relatively wide variety of circumstances devised to analyse, predict or otherwise explain the nature or behaviour of a specified set of phenomena that could be used as the basis for action (Van Ryn and Heany, 1992).
Glenn Laverack

Z

Zero and Non-Zero-Sum

Abstract
A zero-sum situation exists when one can only possess x amount of power to the extent that someone else has an absence of an equivalent amount ofpower (Laverack, 2004, p. 34).
Glenn Laverack
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