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Lifecycle thinking for health

Watch Professor Joy Lawn describe the importance of health through the lifecycle and the major themes that apply throughout it.

Where does the lifecycle concept come from? Epidemiology and epigenetic science has helped us to understand the importance of health through the life course, but the lifecycle is not just a concept for epidemiology and science. It is a reality for each of us as humans and especially women, who in many ways are the face of the lifecycle. In the video, Professor Joy Lawn discusses the importance of lifecycle thinking.

Themes that apply throughout the lifecycle

Many themes run throughout the lifecycle but three we would like to highlight are:

  1. Surviving and thriving throughout the lifecycle, the moments of greatest risk, and the general transition in burden of disease from deaths to disability, from acute infections to chronic, non-communicable conditions. However, there are places in the lifecycle, notably at birth, where this transition is yet to be fully realised
  2. Access to health care throughout the lifecycle and common themes of inequitable access, and of gaps in quality of care. With the poorest getting the least care and the lowest quality of care
  3. The crucial interplay of society and environment on the health of women and children through the lifecycle, particularly the empowerment of girls and women.

At every point in the lifecycle there is need for improved data, and innovative research that leads to action. These themes will be the focus of the steps that follow.

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Improving the Health of Women, Children and Adolescents: from Evidence to Action

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FutureLearn - Learning For Life

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