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WALDEN NR 305 - Lecture Note

Course: Nr 305-
Pages: 4
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The remit of professional practice. Although Community involvement and civic engagement Are an integral part of the policy framework, cor-Porate agendas are not always compatible with The philosophy and aims of community develop-Ment. Long-term involvement with communities Is essential for strategies to develop and to be Effective. However, this confl icts with the domi-Nant political philosophy with its emphasis upon Performance management, targets and the desire For immediate results. Crucially, this approach And the issues identifi ed by communities may Confl ict with operational caseload demands or The traditional remit of the service. Much of com-Munity development work is resourced by short-Term funded projects that do not recognise the Time required to work successfully in this way. The funding for initiatives such as Sure Start And New Deal for Communities is longer term But there is vagueness about the sustainability of Programmes once central funding is withdrawn.ConclusionPrimary care organisations clearly recognise the Importance of public involvement but histori-Cally have focused on individuals as patients and Understand involvement from this perspective Of consulting with patients as users of services. As well as being an unfamiliar fi eld, public Involvement may also be viewed as a threat toProfessional expertise and autonomy. The shift Required is signifi cant to move to a position Where members of the public are valued as equal Experts and public involvement is regarded As other than a ‘time consuming indulgence’. Although there are detailed guidelines for Involvement, for example A Stronger Local Voice(DH 2006), understanding how to engage local People is very dependent on individual practi-Tioners. Yet reliance solely on the medical model Of health and professional expertise ignores Many fundamental socio-economic determinants Of health and fosters an unhealthy dependency And passivity among patients. An understanding Of the benefi ts of public involvement and skillsIn supporting public involvement and commu-Nity development are vital aspects of the role of The community health practitioner

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