Comparison Between Community Psychology & Public Health

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Category: Philosophy and Psychology

Date Submitted: 08/02/2012 01:24 AM

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Table Of Contents:

1. Introduction

2. How Community Psychology Originate

3. How Public Healthcare Originated

4. Similarities Of Community Psychology and Public Healthcare

5. Differences Between Community Psychology and Public Healthcare

6. Can Community Psychology and Public Healthcare Work Side-by-Side

7. References

Community psychologists aspire to deal with the community and its collective destiny, rather than that of the individual. (Seedat M, Cloete N, Shocket I, 1988, p40) Public Healthcare focuses more on the public and society in general and therefore attempts to understand the links between socio-environmental contexts and the individual. In the following passages, I would like to unpack the above statements in order to draw up a comparison between Community Psychology and Public Healthcare, and the different approaches that each take in dealing with mental health.

How Community Psychology Originated:

The development of Community Psychology is rooted in the USA, and was a response to a general lack of resources and treatment facilities. (Seedat M, Cloete N, Shochet I, 1988, p39) Leading approaches to dealing with the mentally ill were not addressing the needs of the majority of society, and although approaches like psychotherapy was effective, it seemed to help only certain individuals, and did “nothing to reduce the incidence of the disorder down the road”. (Guernina Z, 1995, p209).

How Public Healthcare Originated:

Public Health has been a developing field since the Industrial Revolution and came about as a social action to fight the spread of infectious diseases. (Gilbert L, 1995, p117). The bio-medical model wasn’t adequately explaining the patterns of these diseases, and the Public Health model responded to this lack of understanding in realising that the health of people includes their total world, i.e. family, work environment, community and society at large.

Similarities of Community Psychology and Public Health:...