What Does Global Health Focus On? What Does Global Health Focus On?

The Focus of Global Health

Global health focuses on the interdisciplinary study of health as it transcends international borders. It includes research and the practice of medicine with the intent of providing information and action plans to improve health worldwide, and to make worldwide healthcare more equitable for populations from all parts of the world. It is based on the belief that all people should have access to affordable and adequate healthcare and that current disparities are unacceptable.

Different individuals and organizations focus on different global health issues and do this through a variety of medical and non-medical disciplines that include but are not limited to:

– Agriculture

– Cultural studies

– Economics

– Environmental studies

– Epidemiology

– Medical research

– Medicine

– Nutrition

– Physical and social geography

– Politics

– Psychology

– Public policy

– Sociology

Providing Equitable Health

There are many factors that go into why it is difficult to provide equitable global healthcare. In the United States and other countries, many of our doctors say that prevention is key and encourage patients to manage their own health and well-being through healthy diets, sufficient physical activity, taking vitamins and minerals as well as other kinds of supplements to promote health, as well as making sure their psychological and spiritual needs are met. 

Many patients in the world do not have the resources and access to quality healthcare, nor do they have the resources and education to try to focus on preventative medicine and doing things such as those mentioned above.

Global health’s ultimate goal is to make people on the planet, all people, as healthy as they can be and to eradicate health problems that we have the knowledge of how to do this.

Prominent Global Health Issues

There are too many current and projected global health issues that concern different people and organizations involved in global health, to name them all here. Some prominent global health issues include the following:

Pandemics

In very basic terms, pandemics are disease outbreaks at the global and/or large scale level where more than one country or region’s people become infected with a disease or another communicable health problem/s. 

Environmental Factors

Global health is becoming increasingly focused on health issues related to air pollution and climate change. Much of the world’s urban populations breath moderately to severely polluted air on a daily and year round basis. Evidence is coming to light and studies that connect climate change to potential health problems, both indicate that with increased climate change is likely to come increased, serious health challenges.

Economic Disparities and Access to Health Care

Despite huge improvements in the field of medicine, much of the world’s populations still lack access to basic health education and health care. 

Political Factors

When political conflicts arise within a country or across national Borders, access to healthcare and services is often interrupted and sometimes even disappears entirely.

Noncommunicable Diseases

Diseases and health problems that are not contagious, such as heart disease and attacks, strokes, cancer and diabetes, account for 70% of all deaths worldwide.

Animal Health, Food Sources and Food Supply

Animal health, the health of food sources and food supply all affect human health and well-being. When any one of these has problems, it can have a negative impact on a population’s health.

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