A Comparison of Community Psychology and Public Health

1182 words 5 pages

In this assignment the key differences and similarities of community psychology and the public health approach will be examined and critically compared. Community Psychology is a branch of psychology which is concerned primarily with achieving positive mental health in the broader context of the community rather than the individual. Public health is primarily concerned and focused on changing behaviours within the context of the public in order to lower the incidence of disease and lower the workload placed on professional medical practitioners.

Community psychology is a relatively new field as far as the behaviour sciences go and was only established as a solution to the
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This lowers the workload for the professionals and enables more of the community access to the health services they require.
Both approaches focus on primary prevention of mental health. This means that in order to reduce incidence rates of mental illness within a specific community, one must first acknowledge the impact that psycho-social stressors’ are having on the individuals. Clinics and preventative medicine branches have been established in several communities and aim to educate the public as well as change high risk behaviours.

Both community psychology and public health try and institute policy which is not beneficial to a capitalistic society. Many of the aims of both community psychology and public health involve reducing the gap between social classes in order to facilitate self actualisation. This process would enable preventative medicine to be more effective as motivation education and self efficacy would improve in the rural communities. As these qualities improved mental health incidence would decrease as individuals in all communities would have access to health care therefore less professionals would need to be operating in the field and could spend more time researching or advancing theories in either field. There is an overwhelming shortage of mental health professionals working the field at the moment and by reducing the workload (by placing responsibilities on the residents of the community, who


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