Health education has been described by the Joint Committee on Health and Education as the profession of educating people about health. This encompasses physical, social, emotional, intellectual, spiritual and environmental health. It is the principle where people as individuals or groups learn to behave in a way that is promoting, maintaining or restoring health. It can be defined as the process of providing information and advice and helping in the development of knowledge and skills in order to change behaviour that affects health. Professionals from a wide range are educators of this, and include teachers, social workers, practice nurses, health visitors and leisure centre staff. In some cases, such as health visiting and practice nursing, health education is an acknowledged part of their role but this isn’t always the case. It isn’t always easy to recognise the potential for a health education role. For example, a school councillor may speak to a student about relationships, and include some information on safe sex practices which promotes a better understanding by the pupil to guard against sexually transmitted diseases.
The World Health Organization defined Health Education as "comprising of consciously constructed opportunities for learning involving some form of communication designed to improve health literacy, including improving knowledge, and developing life skills which are conducive to individual and community health."
The Nineteenth Century
The Poor Law of 1834
Public health provision began with the creation of the nineteenth century Poor Law system and the Victorian sanitary reform movement. The Poor Law was created first in 1815, stating that each parish had to look after its own poor and was received with great criticism as money was raised by taxing the middle and upper classes which caused a great deal of resentment. It was also suggested that it