Key Concepts in Public Health identifies fifty key concepts used across the discipline of public health in order to give the reader a broad perspective of the core topics relevant to training and practice. From epidemiology to health promotion, and ethics to leadership, the book offers an exciting guide to the multiprofessional field. Each entry features a snapshot definition of the concept, a broader discussion addressing the main issues and links to practice, key points relevant to the entry, case studies to illustrate the application to practice, and examples of further reading.

The Historical Development of Public Health

The Historical Development of Public Health

The historical development of public health
Nicholas FultonPhin


The association between human disease and the growth of centres of population has long been observed and the concept of action at a community or population level to influence health is not new; the Romans incorporated aqueducts and sewage systems into the design of their cities. However, for this chapter, the historical focus will be on the emergence of the modern public health movement from the 1830s onward.

Key Points

  • Early public health work focused on the prevention of infectious diseases; the focus is now on other determinants of health.
  • Many of the greatest successes of public health were achieved when the public health department was within and able to influence local government.
  • Is the health service, ...
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