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A Contrast and Comparison of Community Psychology and Public Health

In: Social Issues

Submitted By muano1
Words 787
Pages 4
TOPIC: A contrast and comparison of community psychology and public health
1. Introduction
Community psychology and public health are disciplines that form part of psychology mainly concern with health. Community psychology focuses on physical and mental health promotion, empowerment and social action, while the focus of public health is on health promotion and disease prevention. These two differ in some aspect and also have existing similarities. They can also complement each other have greater impact on community health when integrated. This essay will attempt to reveal the differences, similarities as well as the strength and weakness of these two approaches, it will further conclude by discussing how they complement each other. Firstly a brief overview and historical background will be given for a better understanding.
2. Overview and historical background
Community psychology movement developed in the USA, during an era when there was growing concern about both lack of resources and treatment facilities and the impact of social systems on the human psyche (Iscoe& Speilberger, cited in New perspective in community psychology, 2002) In the 1980s it then gained interest in South Africa, in parallel with the struggle for democracy, when psychologist examined the appropriateness’ of Euro-American based psychology. Public health on the other hand was developed during the era of industrial revolution. It was stimulated by unhealthy social conditions in both industrialised, urban and rural areas .It is based on the western or biomedical model of illness which assumes that disease and distress are a result of lesions within the body or the mind. (Tutorial letter, 2013:8)
3. Approaches of public health and community psychology to social problems
Public health identifies four models sanitary health science, social medicine, community health and the new public health...

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