The definition of health in the Ottawa charter is broad and includes the physical, mental, and social dimensions of life. It focuses on the relationship between health and participation in society. It also stresses the need for vaccinations for older adults. Moreover, the charter outlines the importance of prevention and early treatment of infectious diseases and promotes good public health practices. It calls for the creation of a national public health strategy to tackle the influenza epidemic. However, this goal is not always achievable, and more attention should be paid to disease and its prevention.
The World Health Organization’s constitution defines health as complete physical, mental, and social wellbeing. It proposes that the emphasis on disease should be replaced with the ability to adapt to changes and self-manage situations. The authors of the constitution were aware of the tendency to view health as the absence of disease, but instead emphasized the need to focus on the other aspects of health. The goal is to achieve optimal physical and mental health. For this, the concept of health must be reframed.
The WHO’s 1948 definition of health includes the absence of illness and disability. The current definition of health is counterproductive. The term is ambiguous, and it fails to account for the many people with chronic illnesses or disabilities. As a result, it has led to the over-medicalisation of our society. The WHO also does not account for the need for effective prevention and treatment. For this reason, a more realistic view of health is more appropriate.