The term Health Promotion has often been linked to sales marketing and taken to mean a propaganda approach dominated by the use of mass media; to some extent, this notion is untrue. Health promotion is concerned with the formulating of strategies and application of fundamental principles that aim to improve both the social environment and health status of individuals and communities. This essay will explain the main ideologies of health promotion. It will also identify and explain how health promotion is communicated at macro and micro level, and identify and discuss examples of community involvement in health promotion.
During the 1960's and 1970's, health promotion predominantly consisted of educating people in order for them to improve their health and change their individual attitudes and behaviours. During the latter part of the 1970's the Declaration of Alma-Ata (1978) perhaps signified the first tentative move away from health education and positive advancement towards comprehensive health promotion.
Whilst the declaration centred around health education, considerable emphasis was placed upon Governments' obligation to the health of all their people, and that they should provide equal access to necessary resources in order for their citizens to attain health; the ultimate goal set out by the declaration was 'Health for All by 2000' (Declaration of Alma-Ata: 1978).
However, the health education concept was challenged during the latter part of the 1980's. It was argued that the health education approach was too constricted and too much emphasis was being placed on individual lifestyles; many feared that it could become a 'victim-blaming'ethos (Ewles, Simnett: 2004). Hence, The Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion (1986) was drawn up, its objective was 'to achieve Health for All by the year 2000 and beyond' through health promotion (The Ottawa Charter: 1986). This charter ultimately gave birth to the main principles...