Britain lags behind the rest of the world in reducing coronary heart disease. The risk of heart disease can be reduced and, fortunately, attitudes to health are changing. Individuals are increasingly prepared to take responsibility for their own state of health, and the health care professions are committed to a policy of health education as a means of preventing disease. These developments make it an auspicious time to launch a new effort in coronary heart disease prevention. To be successful however, such an initiative must use the primary health care team as its spearhead. Unfortunately, neither doctors nor health care workers are trained to deal professionally with the task of informing and guiding the public, and Medical Schools do not teach the practicalities of risk detection or of healthy nutrition.
This book is an attempt to meet the need for continuing education in heart disease risk reduction and brings together key papers from a wide variety of international sources which demonstrate different ways of putting the principles of health education into practice, and teach the primary health care team how to tackle their preventive responsibilities with professional knowledge and skill. This book is the Course Reader for the Open University course 'Coronary Heart Disease: Reducing the Risk', the first in a series of "Education for Health" courses funded by the Health Education Council.