Reviewer: Raymond C. Tervo, MD (Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare )
Description: This book introduces and updates the theory and practice of health promotion and its potential impact on social values and sense of community.
Purpose: The purpose is to inform and stimulate discourse on health promotion. These are worthy objectives and the book meets them.
Audience: It is intended for students and professionals. Many of the contributors are authorities engaged in health promotion. Their views on health promotion in areas such as children's mental health, sexual health and culture, occupational health, and alternative medicine are helpful.
Features: The book begins with an overview of the historical roots of health promotion and its relationship to the biomedical model. The book presents the perspectives of those engaged in health promotion programs and builds on their experience. It is clearly written and accessible and a few tables and figures amplify the text. Extensive reference lists are current and relevant. Significant omissions might include minimal or no discussion about communication theory, economics, or social marketing.
Assessment: This attractively presented book is a useful introduction for professionals and graduate students applying the techniques of health promotion to public health policies, programs, and practices. The chapters discussing specific programs successfully integrate content and experience. Before reading this book, professionals grounded in the biomedical model ought to be braced for other viewpoints. The authors have assembled a new book that is supplemental reading for all interest in understanding and doing health promotion.