Health and Health Promotion

Topics: Nursing, Public health, Health care Pages: 9 (1770 words) Published: October 8, 2014

Health and Health Promotion
Deborah Keller
Thomas Edison State College
Health Assessment
Pamela Card
May 5, 2014
Health and Health Promotion
A traditional approach to health care in general is one in which the goal of intervention is disease management in an attempt to minimize the harmful effects of a health crisis. Once a health crisis occurs, the quality of life for an individual is already negatively impacted. Therefore, health promotion is an equally, if not more important, component of health care that aims to improve the quality of life. Through the primary prevention efforts of health promotion, emphasis on avoiding disease and adopting a healthy lifestyle offers the greatest opportunity for a healthy and fulfilling life. As primary care givers, nurses play an important role in health promotion by demonstrating proper attitudes and behavior modeling, by providing valuable patient education and by advocating for and empowering patients and their families. There are numerous nursing theories which provide a framework for nurses to employ health promoting strategies in their practice. Defining Health and Health Promotion

One of the most widely used definitions of health is that of the World Health Organization (WHO): “Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” Since the publishing of the WHO definition, changes in population demographics, the aging of society, and the changing nature of disease have caused researchers to question the relevance of this definition in today’s world. One criticism is that the concept of complete health disregards those with chronic illnesses who can learn to live fulfilling lives (Huber et. al, 2011). According to O’Donnell (2009) health is not a constant state, but a state that continually evolves with life circumstances. Regardless, health isclearly a complex state that exists both to, and apart from, its relationship to illness. Health promotion is a process that benefits both the individual and society. The essence of health promotion is the preservation of health. Caring for the sick is a reactive intervention to health care issues whereas health promotion is a proactive strategy for prevention. An important step necessary to shift the momentum of healthcare to a proactive role is making the public aware of how they can actively participate in managing and improving their own health. As noted by Jadelhack (2012), “Health promotion is carried out by and with people, not on or to people” (p. 85). Education is a key factor in this step, as well as providing people with the resources needed to live out strategies for a healthy lifestyle. Improved health reduces healthcare costs and improves the overall quality of life. The Role of Nursing Theory

Nursing theory and nursing practice are interrelated processes, and neither one holds value without the other. Theories unapplied are speculative, and practice without purpose is ineffective. To adequately participate in health promotion strategies, nurses must understand the basis for, and the goal of, their practice. Two theories that demonstrate health promotion are Neuman’s Systems Model and Roy’s Adaptation Model of Nursing. Both models provide a solid framework for nurses to develop and employ health promotion strategies when caring for their patients. In the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU), application of these theories can contribute to the health status of both infants and their families. These theories complement each other in the process of the developmental care practices that are found to be an essential component of health promotion in this unique patient population. Two Theories

Betty Neuman’s System model focuses on how patients respond to environmental stressors, and on how nurses can help maintain wellness through the use of prevention strategies aimed at attaining,...

References: Huber, M., Knottnerus, J. A., Green, L., Van der Horst, H., Jadad, A. R., Kromhaut, D., ... Smid, H. (2011, ). How should we define health? British Journal of Medicine, 343 (6).
Jadelhack, R
Roy’s Adaptation Model. (2013). Retrieved April 30, 2014, from Model
The electric Ben Franklin: A quick biography of Benjamin Franklin
World Health Organization. (1948). Official Records of the World Health Organization. Retrieved April 30, 2014, from
Zimmerman, K., & Bauersachs, C
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