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Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health 2006;39(1): 2-6.
Preventive Medicine in Times of a Rapid Epidemiologic Transition in Korea.
Jung Han Park
Department of Preventive Medicine, Catholic University of Daegu School of Medicine, Korea. jhpark@cu.ac.kr
Ever since the foundation of the Korean Society for Preventive Medicine in 1947, members of the Society had made a remarkable contribution to the public health development and national health promotion. They had played key roles in establishing national health system, improving environmental hygiene, controlling infectious and chronic diseases, promoting family planning, improving industrial and environmental health, and developing health service management. However, the Society had less actively responded to the changes in health service needs of the population that were caused by a rapid epidemiologic transition in last a few decades. Early detection and treatment of chronic diseases including cancer and cardiovascular diseases and risk reduction by the life style modification are major approaches to the contemporary national health problems and they are the core contents of preventive medicine. The author proposed to develop the clinical preventive medicine specialist who will have additional training in clinical medicine for health screening and life style modification to the current preventive medicine training program and thus will be able to provide comprehensive preventive medical services. Another area that the Society may take the initiative is training preventive medicine specialist in the disaster, including bioterrorism, preparedness and management. The Society should be more active in proposing health policy and health service program and also participate collectively in a large scale health research project of the government. These approaches may not only contribute more effectively to the national health promotion but also improve the identity of the Society.
Key words: Preventive medicine; Epidemiologic transition; Health service needs; Clinical preventive medicine
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