Around 133 million people in the United States of America suffer from at least one chronic illness. The stats have shown an exponential rise in the last decade. By 2030, the number might reach an estimated amount of 170 million.
The decline in the health and fitness of communities is a matter that sought utmost attention and contemplation. Public health plays a pivotal role in safeguarding the well-being of our community. It’s about collective responsibility, ensuring that every individual thrives in a healthy environment. When we place public health at the forefront, we erect a fortress against diseases, bolster well-being, and elevate the tapestry of life itself. It emboldens us to confront health disparities head-on, unravel the complex threads of social determinants that shape our well-being, and forge communities that stand tall in the face of adversity.
An unhealthy diet, lack of physical activity, stress, absence of social gatherings, and substance abuse are major causes of long-term illnesses. Even though the government allocates a large budget for the health sector, the outcomes are disappointing.
We have prepared a list of ideas to promote public health in communities. Implementing these will bring significant change all around the country.
- Education brings a change
Elevating the well-being of our communities and striving for improved health outcomes should undeniably remain the paramount objective for each and every member of our society. Simultaneously, for those who are dedicated public health practitioners or aspire to become one, higher education becomes a crucial endeavor for them. Curriculums like online degree MPH equip you with the knowledge and skills required to address the intricate challenges faced by the community. These online programs also provide you with the advantage of flexibly managing your schedule.
The agenda of most MPH programs is to deal with vast areas of public health study, which cover:
- Health policy analysis
- Policy development and implementation
- Public health principles
- Health economics and financing
- Global health policy
- Build lively parks
The lack of public parks strips people away from the opportunity to spend time in nature. It also reduces places that people can go to for work out. Obesity, diabetes, and hypertension are prevalent chronic illnesses that affect many today. These are all caused by physical inactivity.
Parks are the perfect way for community members to interact and exercise together. A good company will also keep people motivated to continue the journey of losing weight and working out.
The first step is to get everyone’s opinion on the location of the public park. Keep the community in the loop about the progress and planning process. Hire professionals to do the architectural and logistic work. Ensure that all activities and equipment installed in the park correspond with the community’s interests.
Moreover, parks contribute to mental well-being by providing green spaces for relaxation, stress reduction, and connecting with nature, which can improve mental health and overall quality of life.
- Opting for a healthy lifestyle
These are fun ways to engage with members while promoting health. It can be anything from yoga or Zumba lessons to Pilates or aerobics. Physical fitness helps with diseases like
- Heart disease
- Back pain
According to WHO, adults aged 16-64 should do at least 150-300 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity.
Set a time and date that works for everybody and pitch in to hire an instructor. Involve enthusiastic community members who are zealous about fitness and wellness to serve as volunteers. Seek out individuals with a wide range of expertise, including fitness instructors, event planners, marketing specialists, or administrative professionals.
- Volunteer for health-related issues
Reach out to local healthcare facilities, community health clinics, or organizations devoted to public health, and offer your time and valuable skills. Involvement in health screenings and education will bring a healthy change in the community. Regular checkup camps in areas with low socio-economic status and poor facilities are an efficient way to have equality in receiving health.
- Create awareness in schools
Schooling years are the most influential time in a child’s life. The habits they create at a young age are likely to be permanent. Most children begin to form habits at the age of 9. Regular intake of unhealthy food at school, exposure to drugs, and physical inactivity are a few things we must eradicate promptly.
School cafeterias must introduce students to healthier options. The food does not have to be boring. There are uncountable ways to sneak vegetables and fruits into children’s diets. A little planning and effort before deciding on a menu will work wonders.
- Launch a public health competition
It is human nature to stay motivated when others are in the same boat as you. Hence, community challenges are very compelling. You can arrange weight loss competitions, races, and other sports competitions. Such activities will be physically and socially beneficial.
You can even do a bikeathon. It is a long-distance cycling event that raises money for charity. It will be advantageous in so many ways. The amount collected can benefit vulnerable people in need. Doing this will increase a sense of unity in the community.
- Create awareness and rehabilitation centers for drug abuse
Drug and substance abuse is a common problem in a community. According to National Center for Drug Abuse Statistics, 57.277 million people use tobacco or nicotine products. People aged 18-25 are most likely to fall victim to this harmful habit. A community should create awareness about the consequences of indulging in drug usage.
They should also help victims through rehabilitation centers and social healthcare providers. It is crucial to remove the stigma around getting professional help in such cases. All members should make active efforts to prevent drug abuse and offer assistance.
- Advocate for policy change
Raise your voice and become a powerful advocate for policy change that puts public health at the forefront. Dive headfirst into local and regional policy discussions, immersing yourself in the heart of decision-making. Join forces with advocacy groups and pen letters to elected officials, presenting your concerns on critical health issues.
The promotion of public health gives rise to the prevention of illnesses rather than their cure. The impact of such active efforts by communities brings about a more significant change than personal lifestyle changes. Results might take time, but the key to success ongoing commitment and active participation.