Prevention: A Blueprint for Action. Action Steps for Researchers and Health Professions Educators

04/01/2004

Progress in health promotion and disease prevention necessarily depends on continued research and knowledge generation and dissemination.  Therefore, researchers and health professions educators are critical in furthering our understanding of the etiology of chronic conditions such as obesity and effective approaches for prevention and treatment of these conditions.  In addition, successful health promotion and disease prevention requires translation and dissemination of scientific findings into effective clinical practices to reach all individuals.

  • Continue research into the pathogenesis, etiology, epidemiology, prevention and treatment of chronic diseases and conditions including obesity.  Continue to explore optimal methods to translate research findings into clinical practice to change human behavior and foster healthy habits.
  • Develop outcome measures for health promotion and disease prevention activities, services, and practices.
  • Encourage and adopt an interdisciplinary approach to address chronic conditions such as obesity.
  • Develop and assess innovative methods to engage the public about the importance of health promotion and disease prevention and the link between the risk for chronic conditions and personal behaviors and choices such as physical activity and diet choices.  Information, communication, and education should encompass the lifespan beginning in early childhood and continuing into older age.
  • Focus on identifying effective ways to improve the health literacy of all individuals to reinforce the importance of health promotion and disease prevention for all segments of the population.
  • Seek partnerships with community, public or private entities to promote research and educational initiatives regarding health promotion and disease prevention.  Develop a multi-pronged community approach involving all stakeholders to reach all individuals.
  • Design curricula and testing for health professionals (undergraduate and graduate) that comprehensively cover the science of health promotion and disease prevention and that examine and teach effective approaches to change individual behaviors.  Integrate health professional education and training across disciplines.

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