The Added value of HP and Health Education Methods and Concepts in the Prevention of Communicable Diseases

Communicable disease control is a challenging endeavour and as such more knowledge is needed to identify what underpins the practice of disease prevention. Health communication is integral to the effective public health response to the continuing threat posed by communicable diseases, and it is clear that the complexities and the multidisciplinary nature of health communication involve a vast range of skills drawing from a number of disciplines including health, education, public health, health promotion, social marketing and information technology.


From these disciplines, health promotion in particular is well recognised as contributing to consistent progress in areas of non-communicable diseases prevention, e.g. accidents prevention, fighting against smoking. Examples from communicable disease areas where health promotion works well are very limited and mainly related to HIV/AIDS. Health education is also recognised as having a consistent contribution to improving knowledge and behaviours related to healthy lifestyles. Within this broad background, there is very limited evidence on how health promotion and health education contributes to communicable diseases prevention and how the gap between the two areas - non-communicable and infectious diseases - can be bridged.



The objectives of the project were:

  • To investigate how health promotion and health education models, approaches and theories are used in the area of communicable diseases – (via literature review)
  • To discuss alternatives on how health promotion and health communication experience from non-communicable disease areas can be transferred into the communicable disease area.

Health promotion experts and IUHPE Consultants David McQueen and Erma Manoncourt conducted an extensive review of the academic and grey literature. They were guided by an Advisory Committee including Indu Ahluwalia (USA), Sara Bensaude de Castro Freire (Belgium), Stephan Van den Broucke (Belgium), Marie-Claude Lamarre (France), Vivian Lin (Philippines), Noni Macdonald (Canada), and Jeanine Pommier (France).





November 2014: Yuri Cartier participated in a pre-conference session by the name of “The added value of Health Promotion and Health Education methods and concepts in the prevention of communicable diseases” at the 7th European Public Health Conference in Glasgow, Scotland. More information about the preconference is available here: