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Chapter 19: Health Perception

Key Terms
health goals
health-illness continuum
health perception
health promotion
health within illness
population health
preventive health care
primary health care
primary prevention
secondary prevention
tertiary prevention

Learning Objectives
After studying this chapter, you should be able to do the following:
• Describe the perception of health for individuals, families, and communities.
• Compare factors that affect health for individuals, families, and communities.
• Understand the focus of assessment of health in the individual, family, and
• Identify health goals and expected outcomes in planning for individuals, families, and
• Discuss the use of the nursing diagnosis Health-seeking behaviors.
• Identify methodologies of intervention for improving the health of individuals,
families, and communities.
• Evaluate health outcomes in individuals, families, and communities.

Chapter Outline
Health as a National and an International Goal
Definitions of Health
Health as the Absence of Disease
Health as a Continuum
Health as Wellness and Well-Being
Health in Populations
Social Environment
Physical Environment
Public Policy and Intervention
Individual Health
Family Health
Community Health
Focused Assessment for Health-Seeking Behaviors
Interventions to Promote Health
Designing Health Promotion Activities
Primary Health Care
Interventions to Prevent Illness
Levels of Preventive Care
Methods of Prevention

Key Principles
• Because we are all citizens of the world, health cannot be viewed from only an
individual or a local perspective.
• Health is more than the absence of disease.
• Health exists on a continuum.
• Wellness includes positive physiological function and a sense of well-being.
• Population health considers health problems a person encounters by being a part of a
group and focuses intervention on the population rather than on the individual.
• An individual’s health is affected by many personal, family, and community factors.
• Families are the primary unit of health.
• Community health studies have revealed that health is also affected by changing
conditions in communities.
• Influences from internal and genetic factors and from external sources affect health.
• Assessment of individual health involves physical, social, emotional, intellectual, and
spiritual dimensions.
• Family health assessment requires gathering health data on each member of the family
and on the function of the family as a whole.
• Community assessment uses statistics on population data, statistics on the use of
services, and data that compare community needs with available services.
• The nursing diagnosis Health-seeking behaviors addresses the desire or need for
positive health action by individuals.
• Primary health care consists of all care necessary to people’s lives and health,
including health education, nutrition, sanitation, maternal and child health care,
immunizations, prevention, and control of endemic disease.
• Nurses carry out preventive health care and health promotion in a multitude of ways
each day of nursing practice.