Identifying Priority Health Issues

Identifying Priority Health Issues

  • Social justice principles
  • Priority population groups
  • Prevalence of condition
  • Potential for prevention and early intervention
  • Costs to the individual and community

Social Justice Principles:

Social justice is a concept that in general refer to human rights. The concept of social justice is centred around:

  • Helping groups improve their lives who are otherwise overlooked upon due to discriminative, racial, ethnical and sexist mindsets.
  • Ensuring all groups of people regardless of their race, ethnicity and religion get equal healthcare services.
  • Promoting diversity inclusion and making sure all Australians receive supportive environments.

Priority Population Groups:

  • In regards to public health, the aim of creating priority population groups is to identify:
    • Which disease or disorder is significantly prevalent
    • Which cohort can be classified in different risk groups
    • Measuring the weightage of that disease as a public health concern

Prevalence of Condition:

  • Prevalence is represented based on the number of cases or proportion of a particular population, who have been found to affected by a clinical condition or risk factor at a particular time.
  • Prevalence of condition(s) is obtained by analysing the total number of people who have been diagnosed with a certain condition against a study sample.
  • Prevalence is expressed as a fraction, a percentage, or the number of cases per 10,000 or 100,000 people.

Potential for prevention and early intervention:

 Potential for Prevention:

  • The prevention phase of disease management involves implementation of various strategies, policies and programmes for disease prevention
  • Policies are implemented on a national or community level to prevent or subjugate clinical and behavioural health issues.

Early Intervention:

  • Early intervention refers to the swift management of diagnosed cases
  • Protocols are undertaken in terms of treatment and therapeutic measures for containing the prognosis of a disease to a more severe stage.

Costs to the Individual and Community:

  • Costs to the individual and community is the scrutinization of the economic aspects of a disease on an individual. Costs to the individual are measured in terms of:
    • Financial loss
    • Productivity loss
    • Substandard quality of life
    • Emotional strain
  • Costs to the individual and community can be of two types:
    • Direct Costs:
      • All costs which are spent in direct relation to a disease or health condition.
      • Generally, the healthcare system bears this cost type.
    • Indirect Costs:
      • Relates to productivity loss, loss of employment, insurance etc.


Extract from Business Studies Stage 6 Syllabus. © 2010 Board of Studies NSW.