Friday, 2 May 2014

DISEASE AND HEALTH

With the changing time and period, people have acquired good exposure towards their health. The situation has improved today across the world. There are now various opportunities and programmes to help people remain healthy and improve their lifestyle. Recently, an article from global health organisation stated that now people are contented to access to safe and clean water. Additionally, the research and development teams have started with various schemes on providing adequate sanitation, an adequate supply of food, nutrition and housing, healthy occupational and environmental conditions, and access to health-related education and information, including  sexual and reproductive health to the people.

Not only communities have availability of goods and services relating to public health care, but economic affordability and accessibility too. On the other hand, they have become quite open minded in understanding and accepting the responsibility towards their social and physical well-being.  Therefore, the only need is to be optimistic about the situation and have a holistic view towards its implementation. A broad planning is definitely required in this direction along with its action plan. Hence, this scenario will definitely demand evaluation and can be re-examined at regular intervals. This reminds me about the lines quoted by Dr. Anders Nordstorm, Ambassador for Global Health, Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Sweden, in his article, “It is the right time to focus on health and not merely on disease.”

Unfortunately, in spite of various measures to bring more improvement in these phases, the world is still undergoing some major problems. These problems are poverty and inequality, health, profit making pharmaceutical companies, lack of funds for health care and educational services. There are different NGOs and organisations that have provided the statistics to show the challenges that the people are experiencing globally. In spite of various new schemes and provisions in health care since 1950, people are still suffering from non- communicable diseases and malnutrition. Sir Michael Marmot, a professor in Epidemiology and Public Health at University College, London, stated in an interview that most health problems are due to social, political and economic factors. “The key determinants of health of individuals are the circumstances in which people are born, live, work and age, “he says. He further added that the social and economic environment affects those circumstances.

The research and the data stated by the World Bank say, that life expectancy worldwide has risen on average by 4 months each year since 1970. Furthermore, the infant mortality rates fell from 80 per 1000 births in 1980 to 49.4 per 1000 in 2011. It reflects the health of the people and the quality of care they receive when they are sick. Although, the overall living conditions are improving but still various sections of the society require to be worked on. This is because of the wide disparity in the living conditions worldwide. The figures show that the infant mortality rates in developed countries like Japan is as low as 2 while in underdeveloped countries like Afghanistan it is as high as 136. There is a need to reduce this disparity.

85% of the world population lives in the driest half of the planet. 783 million people do not have access to clean water and almost 2.5 billion do not have access to adequate sanitation. 6 to 8 million people die annually from the consequences of disasters and water-related diseases.

Global population growth projections of 2–3 billion people over the next 40 years, combined with changing diets, result in a predicted increase in food demand of 70%. Over half of the world population lives in urban areas, and the number of urban dwellers grows each day. Urban areas, although better served than rural areas, are struggling to keep up with population growth (WHO/UNICEF).

From my personal perspectives, better health plays the very important role towards the happiness and well-being of humankind. The country still needs to work on public health care sectors, and should attain proper database to work on. The above known reasons indicate and draw attention to a strong implementation of schemes and other provisions. To faster the process and benefit people in this direction, the capital acquired must be evenly distributed amongst various sectors of the society for the growth and development of the nation.

Another important aspect that draws our attention are the illness or disease due to improper medical facilities or the prices of the various drugs offered by the profit-making pharmaceutical companies. The fact is that each illness or disease has some effects that may be long lasting and these effects could be emotional, economical or due to social concerns. Poor health indeed holds back an ability of an individual to work better, that ultimately effects the productivity of the state. Nevertheless, some components drive passion and determination to change the prevailing scenario and hence we need to look at the strength and power of an individual instead of completely relying on the elected officials.

Richard Hooker, an American writer and surgeon said, ‘Change is not made without inconvenience, even from worse to better.’ Therefore, to work better in this direction, people needs to be aware about what needs to be changed or where the change is required. In simple words, the focus should be very clear. In my opinion, the more number of guided and trained health professionals will be able to overcome the barrier to change.  At this moment, before one starts to look up at the difficulties faced in the health care department, there is need to pay more attention to different individuals around you.

Therefore,  as an individual we can spread awareness about basic practices like maintaining hygiene not only at home but also at public health services. The regulations and policies need to convey to the state through proper media ensuring about the understanding of the community.  We also need various organisations who can work with families, governments to provide useful good and services that help them stay healthy and become stronger. I can get associated with the organisation and can help them spread awareness in the society. I can be more responsible towards my own physical and social well-being.

It is rightly said by Dr. Margaret Chan, director- General, WHO “The world needs a global health guardian, a custodian of values, a protector and defender of health, including the right to health.”

Bibliography