Consumer health is a state of well-being enjoyed by people who buy products and use services that research deems safe. Most governments try to protect this state by offering disease prevention information and warnings about products and services that pose a risk to public health. The health of consumers represents more than freedom from disease; it protects physical, social, and mental wellness and aims to prevent illness.
Governmental health agencies typically offer advice to promote a healthy population. They provide information about disease prevention and the latest research available. These agencies commonly employ researchers and scientists, and work with universities and laboratories to discover modern methods of prolonging life expectancy and improving overall health.
One major function of these agencies ensures that health information is readily available to the public. They typically communicate with health professionals, educators, scientists, and the public to make health and safety news widely available. Consumer health organizations use the media, the Internet, and newsletters to raise awareness on important health topics and educate the public about preventative medicine.
Efforts to protect the public also center on food, drug, and product safety. Consumer health information might warn the public about tainted food or drugs, and provide a method of filing a complaint against a product or service. Information is typically available on everything from products that emit radiation to dietary supplements and cosmetics.
Making consumers aware of chronic and infectious diseases helps prevent their spread and can improve prevention and treatment possible. When the public knows about genetic, lifestyle, and environmental risks that cause disease, people might be better equipped to prevent disorders like heart disease and cancer. For example, research linking tobacco to cancer may result in lifestyle changes that save lives.
Infectious disease control represents another area that protects the public from the spread of contagious illnesses. Public health agencies promote the development of new vaccines, tests, and therapies to treat diseases that once posed a serious health risk, such as measles, chickenpox, and influenza. Research led to vaccinations that protect citizens from the spread of these conditions and enhance consumer health.
Information is commonly available to promote wellness at every stage of life, from before birth to an advanced age. Public health organizations routinely offer prenatal advice to pregnant women to increase the chance their babies are born healthy. Health topics might also focus on children, adolescents, adults, and the elderly.