Each phase of a human being's life is shaped by structural changes in the body and mind and by the needs that result from these changes. In a number of life phases – childhood, pregnancy or advanced age – health is an especially important factor and particular care is needed to protect it.
International dementia symposium. Poor concentration and increasing forgetfulness are early signs of dementia, a disease that can rob a person of the ability to live independently. In early June, some 120 people working in public administration, research and the practical setting met at the first international dementia symposium, hosted by Switzerland, to discuss possible ways in which the health service and society can meet this challenge. more
Palliative care/publication. The term "palliative care" is used when the focus of treatment is no longer on cure or life-prolonging measures, but on alleviation of suffering and on the patient's quality of life. Palliative care is playing an increasingly important role in care of the ageing. A brochure is available that provides a touching portrait of this approach in practice, with sensitive contributions from patients and health professionals. more
Lead article. According to the National Health Report 2008, education is one of the most important socio-economic determinants of health. People with a high level of education generally behave in a healthier way, feel healthier and have a longer life expectancy than sectors of the population with little education. Conversely, healthy pupils have been shown to learn more easily and to retain what they have learnt for a longer time. There is therefore an interactive relationship between education and health. more
Editorial Andrea Arz de Falco. The Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH) has a vested interest in schools because they play an important role in public health. All children in Switzerland have the right to a basic education. During the years that children and adolescents spend at school, they also learn a great deal about their health. In the classroom they are taught the essentials of hygiene and biology, and in the corridors and during the breaks they learn behaviour and skills relating to diet, physical activity and how to deal with stress, conflict and risk situations. This stands them in good stead for the rest of their lives. We also know that a good atmosphere at school has a positive effect on performance in teachers, children and adolescents. more
Physically active learning. Schools that integrate physical activity into the school routine in areas other than sport and physical education are very successful: their pupils and teachers are more concentrated and receptive during lessons and enjoy the everyday life of the school. This means that a greater amount of physical activity at school creates a setting that promotes health and supports learning, teaching and a good school climate. more