Editorials

Child health promotion and its challenge to medical education

BMJ 1997; 315 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.315.7110.694 (Published 20 September 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;315:694

Doctors need practical preventive skills they can use in clinical settings

  1. David Stone, Directora,
  2. Harry Campbell, Senior lecturerb
  1. a Paediatric Epidemiology and Community Health Unit (PEACH), Department of Child Health, University of Glasgow, Glasgow G3 8SJ,
  2. b Department of Public Health Sciences, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh EH8 9AG

The recently published recommendations for a national programme of child health promotion1 provide a structured framework for addressing the primary prevention of many of the major causes of illness and disability in preschool children. This is the latest in a series of important statements from the British Paediatric Association (now the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health) working party on child health surveillance.2 3 It repeats earlier calls for a targeted programme of secondary prevention measures, selected on the basis of evidence of efficacy, together with a greater emphasis on health promotion. Taken together, these reports represent a major change in the role of community child health services away from mechanistic attempts at early detection of developmental and other problems towards a more holistic approach to child health. They also have important implications for the way that clinicians are trained.

Perhaps the …

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