P1, P2, M1 unit 20 health and social care LEGISLATION
Health education has been described by the Joint Committee on Health and Education as the profession of educating people about health. This encompasses physical, social, emotional, intellectual, spiritual and environmental health. It is the principle where people as individuals or groups learn to behave in a way that is promoting, maintaining or restoring health. It can be defined as the process of providing information and advice and helping in the development of knowledge and skills in order to change behaviour that affects health. Professionals from a wide range are educators of this, and include teachers, social workers, practice nurses, health visitors and leisure centre staff. In some cases, such as health visiting and practice nursing, health education is an acknowledged part of their role but this isn’t always the case. It isn’t always easy to recognise the potential for a health education role. For example, a school councillor may speak to a student about relationships, and include some information on safe sex practices which promotes a better understanding by the pupil to guard against sexually transmitted diseases.
The World Health Organization defined Health Education as "comprising of consciously constructed opportunities for learning involving some form of communication designed to improve health literacy, including improving knowledge, and developing life skills which are conducive to individual and community health."
The Nineteenth Century
The Poor Law of 1834
Public health provision began with the creation of the nineteenth century Poor Law system and the Victorian sanitary reform movement. The Poor Law was created first in 1815, stating that each parish had to look after its own poor and was received with great criticism as money was raised by taxing the middle and upper classes which caused a great deal of resentment. It was also suggested that it encouraged the poor to have children they were unable to care for, creating yet more poverty. This was then amended in response to the 1832 Royal Commission of Inquiry into the Operation of the Poor Laws. In their report, the commission made several recommendations to Parliament. As a result, the Poor Law Amendment Act 11834 was passed, which stated that no able-bodied person was to receive money or other help from the Poor Law authorities except in a workhouse. Workhouse conditions were extremely bad and made to be very unpleasant to discourage people from wanting to receive help. In spite of this the Act did ensure that the poor were housed, clothed and fed and that children who entered the workhouse would receive some education. Those in the workhouse were branded as paupers and hours of manual labour was required, with families being split up. Despite support from respected landowners such as the Duke of Wellington and Sir Robert Peel, and surprisingly James Kay Shuttleworth (seen as a ‘progressive’ doctor) there was also criticism by political campaigners like Richard Oastler. He wrote pamphlets and letters to the newspapers of the day describing the Poor Law Amendment Act as cruel and unchristian; describing workhouses as ‘prisons for the poor’. The workhouses definition of ‘healthcare’ was really just a means of keeping the poor alive at the most basic subsistence level.
The first national Public Health Act 1848 & the Nuisance Removal and Contagious Disease Act.
When cholera approached Britain during the summer of 1848 there were two important health acts passed in Parliament. Firstly there was the Public Health Act itself. This created a General Board of Health that had the power to begin and help assist local sanitary reform projects. Second was the Nuisance Removal and Contagious Diseases Act. This gave the General Board of Health powers to give orders and instructions, providing authority had been issued first by an order from the Privy Council....
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