Indiana University Indiana University IU

Indiana Prevention Resource Center (IPRC)

The Art & Science of Health Promotion Conference

Best Science + Expert Implementation = Best Outcomes How do we meld scientific knowledge with human sensitivity and expert management to produce the best health outcomes? Scientific discoveries have been remarkably important in shaping the strategies we use and the outcomes we achieve in improving health behaviors. Major advances in the past forty years include discovering the protocols necessary to not only prevent but reverse heart disease through lifestyle change; the combination of clinical and policy approaches necessary to increase rates of tobacco prevention and cessation by 10 times; shifting the perception of exercise from something to be done with caution under a doctor’s care to a legitimate “magic bullet” that helps prevent or treat the vast majority of major diseases; recognition that education is not sufficient to produce behavior unless combined with motivation enhancement, skills training and opportunities to practice healthy lifestyle; that increased self-efficacy, targeted enticements and stage based tailored interventions increase success rates; that social influences and the physical environment can enable or sabotage even the best designed interventions; that lifestyle behaviors drive a significant portion of medical costs, and well designed health promotion programs cost less than they save; and of course the underlying math and physics that provided the technology supporting web communication and high speed computing. These discoveries tend to be well documented and broadly disseminated.