By Michael Calnan

Drawing at the disciplines of sociology, politics and epidemiology,the writer analyses Governmental and different guidelines for the prevention of middle illness and appears on the feasisbility of such regulations and hindrances barring their adoption.

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Additional resources for Preventing Coronary Heart Disease: Prospects, Policies, and Politics

Sample text

The difference between British blood cholesterol concentrations and concentrations in American populations (male populations) has raised doubts about the value of applying the recommendations of the consensus conference (Consensus Conference, 1985) to the British population (Shaper and Pocock, 1985). The consensus conference recommended that individuals with high risk cholesterol concentrations (above 90th percentile: >259mg/100ml) should be treated intensively by diet and if necessary be supplemented by drugs.

Certainly, there is some doubt about whether the traditional risk factors can adequately explain the social class variations in incidence. It must be emphasised that there is still considerable uncertainty about the causes of CHD and there is some doubt about the part that even the major risk factors such as blood pressure play in the development of the disease. However, this is a position which is not uncommon in medical and epidemiological research. Taking this uncertainty into account, the actual contribution the risk factors make to morbidity and mortality from CHD should not be over-exaggerated.

However, the government does have the option of funding community health development programmes or of supporting the provision and spread of personal counselling by professionals. UK government policy in relation to the prevention of coronary heart disease has taken two distinct forms. There have been those policy documents which have specifically focused on the prevention of CHD and recommended policy measures to control one or a number of risk factors. The second approach has been broader and rather than concentrating specifically on CHD has focused on diseases in general or one specific topic such as smoking or diet and health.

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