Preventive healthcare consists of measures taken for disease prevention, as opposed to disease treatment. Just as health comprises a variety of physical and mental states, so do disease and disability, which are affected by environmental factors, genetic predisposition, disease agents, lifestyle choices. Health and disability are dynamic processes which begin before individuals realize they are affected. Disease prevention relies on anticipatory actions that can be categorized as primal, primary and tertiary prevention; each year, millions of people die of preventable deaths. A 2004 study showed that about half of all deaths in the United States in 2000 were due to preventable behaviors and exposures. Leading causes included cardiovascular disease, chronic respiratory disease, unintentional injuries and certain infectious diseases; this same study estimates that 400,000 people die each year in the United States due to poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle. According to estimates made by the World Health Organization, about 55 million people died worldwide in 2011, two thirds of this group from non-communicable diseases, including cancer and chronic cardiovascular and lung diseases.
This is an increase from the year 2000, during which 60% of deaths were attributed to these diseases. Preventive healthcare is important given the worldwide rise in prevalence of chronic diseases and deaths from these diseases. There are many methods for prevention of disease, it is recommended that adults and children aim to visit their doctor for regular check-ups if they feel healthy, to perform disease screening, identify risk factors for disease, discuss tips for a healthy and balanced lifestyle, stay up to date with immunizations and boosters, maintain a good relationship with a healthcare provider. Some common disease screenings include checking for hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, screening for colon cancer, depression, HIV and other common types of sexually transmitted disease such as chlamydia and gonorrhea, colorectal cancer screening, a Pap test, screening for osteoporosis. Genetic testing can be performed to screen for mutations that cause genetic disorders or predisposition to certain diseases such as breast or ovarian cancer.
However, these measures are not affordable for every individual and the cost effectiveness of preventive healthcare is still a topic of debate. Preventive healthcare strategies are described as taking place at the primal, primary and tertiary prevention levels. In the 1940s, Hugh R. Leavell and E. Gurney Clark coined the term primary prevention, they worked at the Harvard and Columbia University Schools of Public Health and expanded the levels to include secondary and tertiary prevention. Goldston notes that these levels might be better described as "prevention and rehabilitation", though the terms primary and tertiary prevention are still in use today; the concept of primal prevention has been created much more in relation to the new developments in molecular biology over the last fifty years, more in epigenetics, which point to the paramount importance of environmental conditions - both physical and affective - on the organism during its fetal and newborn life. Primal prevention has been propounded as a separate category of "health promotion".
This health promotion par excellence is based on the'new knowledge' in molecular biology, in particular on epigenetic knowledge, which points to how much affective - as well as physical - environment during fetal and newborn life may determine each and every aspect of adult health. This new way of promoting health consists in providing future parents with pertinent, unbiased information on primal health and supporting them during their child's primal period of life; this includes adequate parental leave - ideally for both parents - with kin caregiving and financial help where needed. Another related concept is primordial prevention which refers to all measures designed to prevent the development of risk factors in the first place, early in life. Primary prevention consists of traditional "health promotion" and "specific protection." Health promotion activities are non-clinical life choices. For example, eating nutritious meals and exercising daily, that both prevent disease and create a sense of overall well-being.
Preventing disease and creating overall well-being, prolongs our life expectancy. Health-promotional activities do not target a specific disease or condition but rather promote health and well-being on a general level. On the other hand, specific protection targets a type or group of diseases and complements the goals of health promotion. Food is much the most basic tool in preventive health care; the 2011 National Health Interview Survey performed by the Centers for Disease Control was the first national survey to include questions about ability to pay for food. Difficulty with paying for food, medicine, or both is a problem facing 1 out of 3 Americans. If better food options were available through food banks, soup kitchens, other resources for low-income people and the chronic conditions that come along with it would be better controlled A "food desert" is an area with restricted access to healthy foods due to a lack of supermarkets within a reasonable distance; these are ofte
American Journal of Preventive Medicine
The American Journal of Preventive Medicine is a monthly peer-reviewed medical journal covering research in preventive medicine and public health. It occasionally produces topical supplements, it was established in 1985 as a bimonthly journal and is the official journal of the American College of Preventive Medicine and the Association for Prevention Teaching and Research. The journal receives oversight from a standing Governing Board comprising members of APTR, ACPM, the editorial team and the current editor-in-chief is Matthew L. Boulton of University of Michigan; the first editor-in-chief was Nemat O. Borhani in 1985, followed by Joseph Stokes, who took the job in 1986 and served until his death in 1989. After this Bob Lawrence took over temporarily, until Charles Hennekens took the role in 1991. Kevin Patrick served in the position starting in 1994 and until Boulton took over in 2014, now holds the position of Editor Emeritus; the journal is published by Elsevier. It is a print journal that publishes its articles online.
The Journal Guide describes the purpose of the journal as publishing original research, “on interventions aimed at the prevention of chronic and acute disease and the promotion of individual and community health.” Topics that have been published in the journal have included obesity, cancer, physical activity and sedentary behaviors, the financial relationship between junk food providers and national health organizations, women’s health and violence, addiction and drug abuse, driving under the influence preventive methods. The journal is abstracted and indexed in: According to the Journal Citation Reports, the journal has a 2015 impact factor of 4.465. Official website