Health and Well-being
PDS H&W promotes health, well-being and independence through advocacy, services and community engagement.
Informed, compassionate and successful communities shaped by people of all capabilities.
According to the World Health Organization, “Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” In other words, your health is about much more than physical ailments — it’s about emotional and social fitness, too.
On the other hand, wellness is the “active process of becoming aware of and making choices toward a healthy and fulfilling life. Wellness is more than being free from illness; it is a dynamic process of change and growth.”
The two concepts are not opposites, but rather go hand in hand in one’s quest toward complete well-being.
Essentially, if health is the goal, wellness is the way we might achieve it. Wellness is the action while (good) health is the desired outcome.
Why it Matters
We can’t always choose the state of our health. High cholesterol and blood pressure are largely genetic. People are born with heart disease and a predisposition toward diabetes. Accidents cause injuries that last a lifetime. But wellness, on the other hand, is a choice.
We can choose to exercise regularly to manage our health conditions (where possible). We can choose to quit smoking and to take our medications as prescribed. We can see a therapist when our mental state needs some assistance.
• The Highest Quality, People- and Community-Centered Primary Health Care: We commit to continuous improvement in the quality of services and programs with all efforts oriented to meet the specific needs of the people and communities being served.
• Health Equity and Social Justice: We design services and programs to reduce health disparities and inequities. We also advocate for healthier public policy and against unfair practices and prejudices that harm people’s health.
• Community Vitality and Belonging: We partner with community members to build safe and caring communities where everyone is valued and feels like they belong.
What we do
Working hand in hand with our partners, PDS Health and Wellbeing Domain works in many different ways to promote community health and wellbeing across Egypt and Gulf Stats.
- We advocate for increased focus, healthier public policy and a more effective, equitable and comprehensive primary health care system that addresses the determinants of health.
- We support health care facilities to be leaders in primary health care transformation.
- And we lead and participate in research initiatives designed to improve population health, advance health equity and promote health system sustainability.
Healthcare sector is one of the largest sectors consuming energy in Egypt. Yet not so many initiatives about energy efficiency have been offered. That’s why Al-Mahrousa PDS focuses on promoting energy efficient technologies in health facilities through varies activities:
- Networking between public health facilities and energy saving SMEs so they can introduce them to the latest technologies and applications, tools that can read and analyze the electricity distribution and decide upon it which sector are consuming the most and need to be reduced.
- Training and awareness raising program for public health management teams on the adaptation to new technologies and applications for energy saving and the measurements tools that can measure the electricity consumption of each sector in the hospitals also they can have clear decisions on which parts consume more energy and needs to be reduced. As most of the current tools are general and doesn’t show analyses which are the major electricity consumption centers in the Health Facilities.
Our research program interacts with the Model of Health and Wellbeing in two ways: The model informs our research questions and methods, and the knowledge generated by our research provides insights into how best to operationalize the model and adapt it to local contexts. Research helps us to understand the populations we serve; to recognize emerging health challenges, such as loneliness and isolation; and to evaluate new and ongoing programs and services so we know what’s working and where there are opportunities for improvement.
Research also helps us to tell our story. In order to ensure that our partners and stakeholders recognize this, we need clear data. This includes quantitative data – numbers – that demonstrate this value at a system and population level, as well as qualitative data – stories – that show how our work impacts individual patients, caregivers, and providers. Sharing our knowledge through conferences, presentations and publication in peer-reviewed journals helps us reach as many people as possible.
PDS’s research program portfolio is collaborative and crosses sector lines. We work with research partners from academia, primary care, and public health.
Our focus is to building the capacity of the health system to deliver high-quality interventions.
Building capacity entails not only training the front line worker, but also mobilizing knowledge and support to promote development across the health system. Recent reviews on the training of health workers present evidence and strategies to effectively and feasibly train health workers, given their role in supporting the health and well-being of communities.
Our key training opportunities:
- Pre-service training (for graduating nurses and physicians): The curriculum should include grounding in communication skills to engender behavioral change, critical thinking, teamwork, human and patients’ rights awareness, the contextual lessons of the social and behavioral sciences and social prescribing. Importantly, critical thinking competencies, which enable the health worker to continually assess, analyze, and take action on the basis of needs of the community, and to advocate with and on its behalf, should be an integral part of the curriculum.
- In-service training: is necessary for rolling out new interventions to existing health services, including services delivered by Community Health Workers. In-service guidelines discuss best practices pertaining to training approaches, strategies, content, and mechanisms to ensure health worker performance is improved. The use of multiple techniques such as role play, videos, discussions, social prescribing methods and problem solving has shown greater effect on health worker performance than traditional didactic approaches, which would also be applicable in training for delivery of integrated healthcare interventions.
- Health Management skills training (for managerial staff of health facilities): i.e. strategic problem solving, financial management, human resource management and leadership.
- Capacity building training: for emerging and existing SMEs that provide mental health services that promote social and mental well-being.
Evidence shows that the social determinants of health — income, employment, social supports, housing, nutrition, education, the environment — are what make the greatest difference in health outcomes and quality of life. This is why PDS advances health equity and healthy public policy by advocating for the elimination of barriers to health.
Our work on public policy is guided by two fundamental principles.
• Access to the highest attainable standard of health is a fundamental human right.
• Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.
To achieve our vision of the best possible health and wellbeing for everyone, we design outreach initiatives to Shift the Community focus on the concept of Health and Wellbeing. We aim to create an ongoing conversation and dialogue to share our vision, as most of people see the health care from a narrow focus of merely treating illness. And as result of this narrow focus, what we really have is a sickness care system, not a health system at all.
So the challenge and aim is transform Egypt’s sickness care system into a Community Health and Wellbeing system that promotes the best possible health and wellbeing for everyone.