What is HP?

HPF video answers the question; What is health promotion?

Watch the 2 minute 30 second video, including contributions from IUHPE president Michael Sparks and HPF Deputy Executive Director Trevor Simpson.

Prof John Raeburn: Health Promotion advocate

Read this warm, humble and in-depth interview with Emeritus Prof John Raeburn, whose 40+ years in health promotion have helped shape the profession.

Defining health promotion

Health promotion is both a discipline and a process. It focuses on empowering people and communities to take control of their health and wellbeing. Ranging from action at a community level to developing policies, it is founded on the principle that health and wellbeing begins in the settings of everyday life. Read more

Video: What if?.... health promotion campaigns actually worked?

In this 50 minute video, Dr Ekant Veer from the University of Canterbury discusses the severe limitations of NZ's heavy reliance on mass media as a way of sharing knowledge to attempt health promotion. He explores the other factors needed to create successful health promotion initiatives, such as:

  • social norms
  • past experience
  • perceived consequences
  • environment
  • personal ability

The need for health promotion as a distinct approach

The World Health Organisation (WHO) asserts that factors such as where we live, our environment, genetics, education and relationships have a greater influence on our health and wellbeing than the commonly considered factors such as access to health care services [vi].

Although the causal pathway between the two is long, evidence to support this correlation is growing. Health promotion includes work to build that evidence and identify ways to build population health by improving the determinants.

Health promotion is at the cutting edge of hauora

The interdisciplinary nature of health promotion places it at the cutting edge of health and wellbeing: offering creative and effective ways to promote wellbeing and protect groups, communities and populations from health challenges. Read more

Health promotion: a distinct discipline

In his 2013 paper, Prof. John Kenneth Davies concludes health promotion has a unique and specialised role within a wider multidisciplinary approach to maintaining and improving health.

Video: The close link between human rights and health promotion

"States and others have legally binding obligations to engage in health promotion," says Paul Hunt at the 20th Conference of the International Union of Health Promotion and Education. Health promotion is part of the government's role in upholding a person's right to the hightest attainable standard of health. Also see HPF's The Right to Health - Proceedings of the Health and Human Rights Workshops, 2012.

Video: Understanding Health Promotion (Canada)

Ass't Prof Suzanne Jackson discusses health promotion under the frameworks of the Ottawa and Bangkok charters. (8 mins)

Keeping Up to Date paper: Health promotion and spirituality: making the implicit explicit

Richard Egan explores the place of spirituality in health promotion in the 34th of HPF's Keeping Up to Date peer-reviewed papers.  "In New Zealand, partly due to the contributions and aspirations of Māori, spiritual concerns are understood as an essential component of health."  Egan's paper argues that, due to growing evidence and a principled approach, attending to spirituality in health promotion is an ethical imperative, critical to our reflective practice and necessary for comprehensive planning, action and evaluation.

Richard is a Research and Teaching Fellow at the Cancer Society Social and Behavioural Research Unit, Te Hunga Rangahau Arae Mate Pukupuku, Department of Preventive and Social Medicine, University of Otago, Dunedin.

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