Preventive HealthCare Plans consist of several tests the patient can undergo at
reduced costs when compared to the expenses he would incur when undergone individually.
Preventive healthcare deals with the prevention of illness to decrease the burden of disease and associated risk factors. Preventive measures can be applied at all stages across the lifespan and along a disease spectrum, to prevent further decline over time. There are various levels of prevention, provides examples of preventive recommendations and discusses some of the debate within the disciplines of the population and public health.
Chronic diseases are the leading cause of death and disability worldwide and are linked to increasing health costs. Preventative care is advocated as part of a population health approach and includes both clinical preventative services and screening tests. Identifying and preventing potential problems downstream is one strategy for controlling utilization and improving health outcomes.
- Primary prevention prevents the onset of chronic disease by reducing risk factors for development. One type of primary prevention is reducing risks through changes in either behaviour or exposure. Examples include reducing cardiovascular risk through lifestyle changes such as healthy eating and not smoking. Another form of primary prevention is to enhance resistance to exposure of disease through vaccinations (e.g., influenza and pneumonia vaccines, along with childhood vaccines). Some of these prevention techniques can be active involving individual participation and others are passive. Primary prevention generally has a focus on specific risk factors for certain diseases.
- Secondary prevention involves the detection and treatment of pre-clinical changes. Screening procedures are often the first step, leading to early and more cost-effective interventions. The screening process is the combined responsibility of the individual and their healthcare providers, with an emphasis on patient engagement.
- Tertiary prevention that focuses on reversing, arresting or delaying disease is solely in the clinical realm. It helps to lessen the impact of disease on the patient’s overall life. The patient has more contact with the healthcare system, and care providers in many roles and settings.
Prevention is the deterring of the development of a disease, or stopping the progression of a disease that has already begun. The separation of the roles of public health and medicine in the spectrum of disease prevention and treatment creates a lack of coordination in preventive care. For example, those in public health may view populations as all residents in a geographic area, whereas clinicians may view populations as only those that they have delivered care to, which blurs the line between the risk for disease and the disease itself, as well as between prevention and treatment.