Thursday, August 2, 2012

Population Health


"It may be useful to take a step back and consider the factors contributing to illness. It’s important to realize that things like education, the environment, and wealth (and how it’s distributed) play an enormous role in health outcomes, too.

In this lesson, we’ll learn that to make progress combating many of the most important threats to human health, it’s not enough to improve clinical care for one patient at a time. We also have to focus on improving the health of entire populations."

From Institute for Healthcare Improvement, PH 101: Introduction to Population Health (online course)
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I love that social work pioneers, like Jane Adams, have been saying this for a very long time.

With the proliferation of positive psychology and a focus on strengths (another social work hallmark) in the historically male-dominated field of psychology and now a focus on population health in medicine - specifically taking into account person-in-environment factors - well it looks like the social work perspective is finally being integrated by powerful men.

My question is, will the profession receive/take credit?

It's time that we take pride in our models, approaches, theories and assumptions, test them rigorously and then broadcast them to the world.  It serves no one to sit quietly in the shadows waiting for more confident and powerful others to discover the missing pieces we have seen all along.

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