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School of Public Health
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MPH Program in Health Services

The Population Health Approach

Based on Healthy People 2010, the MPH Program in Health Services has a population health approach that focuses on the interrelated conditions and factors that influence the health of populations over the life course, identifies systematic variations in their patterns of occurrence, and applies the resulting knowledge to develop and implement policies and actions to improve the health and well-being of those populations.

The goals of a population health approach are:

  • to maintain and improve the health and health-related quality of life of the entire population
  • to reduce and eventually eliminate disparities in health and quality of life of population groups defined by gender, race or ethnicity, education or income, disability, geographic location, or sexual orientation

Population health and health disparities are influenced by social, economic and physical environments, personal health behaviors or practices, individual capacity and coping skills, human biology, early childhood development, and health services. Larger social, economic, cultural, and political contexts also play important roles.