Towards unity for health utilising community-oriented primary care in education and practice
Art, B.; De Roo, L.; De Maeseneer, J.
Education for Health 20(2): 74
ISSN/ISBN: 1469-5804 PMID: 18058692 Accession: 056620317
Although the evidence is overwhelming that healthcare is delivered more effectively if one involves the targeted communities in decisions concerning their health, top-down programs still rule the world. In order to highlight the benefits of a community-oriented approach, we report the experiences from Ghent, Belgium on COPC styled healthcare initiatives and COPC modelled multidisciplinary education. Community-oriented Primary Care and Education: COPC is a five-step model combining primary health care, public health and community data and resources. The involvement of community (members) is a crucial element in any effort to effectively enhance health (care) in a given community. Small scale examples from two health centers are given. In order to train future healthcare workers to be able to function with the communities, they participate in a one-week interdisciplinary course based on the COPC cycle at the University of Ghent. The COPC program in relation to Its practical organisation, goals and limitations are presented and discussed. In order to reach health objectives set out by disease-specific or health promotion programs, a community-sensitive approach is needed, especially for the most deprived communities. The COPC model offers inspiration and can be a practical tool to work with communities. It is also feasible to create a short COPC exercise to prepare future healthcare workers for complex community work. This model is one of the ways to concretise some of the main objectives of TUFH.