Balance, Prevention and Treatment

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WORKING TOWARDS A BALANCE BETWEEN PREVENTION AND TREATMENT:
A balance between treatment and prevention often comes down to a balance
between immediate needs and long term needs. As a health worker,
you must go to
your people, work with them on their terms and help them find answers to the
needs they feel most. People’s first concern is often to find relief for the
sick and suffering. Therefore one of your first concerns must be to help with healing.
But also look ahead while caring for people’s immediate felt needs; also help
them look to the future. Help them realize that much sickness and suffering can
be prevented and that they themselves can take preventive actions. But be
careful! Sometimes health planners and workers go too far. In their eagerness
to prevent future ills they may show too little concern for the sickness and
suffering that already exist. By failing to respond to people’s present needs,
they may fail to gain their cooperation. And so they fail in much of their
preventive work as well.  TREATMENT AND
PREVENTION GO HAND IN HAND: Early treatment often prevent mild illness from
becoming serious. If u help people to recognize many of their common health
problems and to treat them early in their own homes (optional), much needless
suffering can be prevented. EARLY TREATMENT IS A FORM OF PREVENTIVE MEDICINE:
If u want their cooperation, start where your people are. Work towards a
balance between prevention and treatment that is acceptable to them. Such a
balance will be largely determined by peoples present attitude toward sickness,
healing and health. As u help them look farther ahead as their attitude change
and as more diseases are controlled, you may find that the balance shifts
naturally in favor of prevention. USE TREATMENT AS A CHANCE TO TEACH
PREVENTION: You cannot tell the mother whose child is ill that prevention is
more important than cure. Not if you want her to listen. But u can tell her,
while u help her care for her child that prevention is equally important. WORK
TOWARD PREVENTION: Use treatment as a doorway to prevention. One of the best
times to talk to people about prevention is when they come for treatment. For example,
if a mother brings a child with worms, carefully explain to her how to treat him.
But also take time to explain to both that mother and child (5yrs+) how the
worms are spread and the different things they can do to prevent this from happening.
Visit Their home from time to time, not to find fault, but to help the family
towards more effective self-care  by Isaac Charles

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