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Community Psychology Versus Public Health

In: Philosophy and Psychology

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COMMUNITY AND HEALTH PSYCHOLOGY – PYC4811

PYC 4811

UNIQUE NO: 657794

Assignment 01

Critically compare and contrast the community psychology and public health approaches to social problems.

Introduction to Community Psychology and Public health approach

Community psychology is essentially concerned with the relationship between social systems and individual well-being in the community context. Public health refers to all organized measures to prevent disease, promote health, and prolong life among the population as a whole. Its activities aim to provide conditions in which people can be healthy and focus on entire populations, not on individual patients or diseases. Thus public health and community psychology are both concerned with a population at large and not an individual alone.
(http://www.who.int/trade/glossary/story076/en/). Both approaches have a shared belief that effective treatment should focus on preventative measures that address the causes and effects of diseases as opposed to curative measures which merely treat the incidences and symptoms.
(Guernina, 1995).

Characteristics of both approaches

Community psychology places emphasis on principles and strategies that can prevent social, emotional and behavioral problems and wellness and health promotion at the individual and community levels, borrowed from public health and preventive medicine, rather than a passive, and treatment-based medical model. Early identification and intervention are particularly emphasized. Community psychology places more focus on mental health and behavioral aspects of health. Examples of behavioral aspects include alcohol and drug abuse, risky sexual behavior, teenage pregnancies and violence. In contrast, public health focuses more traditional health concerns. Examples of these include communicable diseases, asthma, diabetes and

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