Intended for healthcare professionals


Corporate responsibility in public health

BMJ 2010; 341 doi: (Published 14 July 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;341:c3758

Change4Life: Good/Optimal Health is Your Responsibility

Good health or optimal health necessitates much effort, persistence
and willpower. Individuals have to be knowledgeable about health practices
but not only must they be knowledgeable, they have to be really determined
to stay health. Change4Life is hard. The acceptance of this could be
however the drive that gets created in many individuals’ minds and this
drive will help to elicit the response for maintaining good health at all
cost. Determination and hard work are very vital to maintain an optimum
level of health. Changing negative habits is challenging, so making health
a priority is the key. This however remains the choice of all individuals.

Good health or optimal health is essentially life’s master project in
and of itself. The process of maintaining good health can occupy a great
deal of time in avoidance and having awareness of the many treats that the
human body may experience. What is really required is a well-balanced
integrated program of preventive and curative medicine, designed to meet
the needs of an area at a given time, and for the programs to be flexible
means that changes have to be made as the needs change (Ndegwa, undated).
However, before an effective program can be made, there must be an
understanding of traditional background of the people to be served: their
economic situation, family structure, religion, interest and problems must
be known, but more so it should be recognized that changes which are
advocated may not make sense to them they cannot be expected to suddenly
change their whole outlook to accord with the ideas of modern medicine
(Ndegwa, undated).

Hence finding an effective program will take time to Change4Life.
Good health programs and services cannot be forced upon an unwilling
individual or community either, and healthcare workers should always keep
this in mind. Nonetheless a consistent promotion of good health or optimal
health will eventually achieve the desired outcomes and individuals will
gain confidence and acceptance of preventative and curative services.

Good health is a major resource for social, economic and personal
development and an important dimension of quality of life and as a result
political, economic, social, cultural, environmental, behavioral and
biological factors can all favor health or be harmful to it (Ottawa
Charter, 1986). Health promotion action aims at making these conditions
favorable through advocacy for health (Ottawa Charter, 1986). Knowledge,
values, perceptions and motivation are causes of positive or/and negative
behavior. The impact of health education must bring about a change in
lifestyle behaviors through promotion and prevention of health. This will
cement physiological and psychological changes. The community must be
educated about health problems affecting them and methods of preventing
and controlling these health problems. Nonetheless at the end of it all
individuals have to choose to take responsibility for their own health.
The choice to Change4Life is your responsibility.


1.Ndegwa, D. (undated) Good Health Practices. Retrieved August 8,
2010 form

2.The Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion Document (1986) produced by
the World Health Organization.

Competing interests:
None declared

Competing interests: No competing interests

12 August 2010
Monique J. Grant-Coke
Nursing Program Coordinator/Assistant Professor
Northern Caribbean University, Jamaica.