The authors of Buchanan ‘A Humanistic Approach to Health Promotion’


Emeritus Professor David Buchanan is the author of ‘A Humanistic Approach to Health Promotion’, a new book published by Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

“A humanistic approach to health promotion” presents a distinct and ethically sound framework for improving population health when the major causes of disease, death and disability are closely associated with human behaviors. Rather than relying on a science and technology strategy to develop ever more powerful and effective techniques to change behavior, a humanistic approach recognizes the unique human capacity for dignity and moral decision-making. The book provides ethical standards, case studies, and concrete practical analogies to demonstrate the feasibility and benefits of moving the field of health promotion in a new humanistic direction.

“I have long been fascinated by the yawning gap between the resounding success of biomedical sciences in the prevention, control and treatment of infectious diseases and the dismal performance of behavioral sciences in developing interventions of comparable effectiveness for changing human behaviors associated with chronic disease prevention,” says Buchanan. “This book represents my current thinking about how to understand and explain this startling discrepancy. If people are now wondering why efforts by public health authorities to get people to wear face masks and practice social distancing have failed so miserably as everyone awaits the arrival of a biomedical COVID-19 vaccine , this book will highlight the significant challenges and distinctive barriers to the development of a science of health promotion. We must radically revise our reflection on the epistemological and ethical foundations of the field.

Buchanan retired in 2018 after serving on the faculty of the University of Massachusetts Amherst School of Public Health and Health Sciences for 29 years, during which time he served as chair of the Department of Health Promotion and Policy. and Founding Director of the UMass Amherst Institute. for global health. He is the author of over 100 peer-reviewed publications and four books.

“A Humanistic Approach to Health Promotion” can be purchased directly from Cambridge Scholars Publishing here.

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