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Health Psychol. 2004 Mar;23(2):126-31.

Prevention and health promotion: decades of progress, new challenges, and an emerging agenda.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT 84112, USA.


Daily habits (e.g., smoking, diet, and exercise) and their immediate consequences (e.g., obesity) confer risk for most of the major health problems in industrialized nations. Hence, determinants of these behaviors and their modifications have been central topics in health psychology. Considerable scientific and applied progress has been made, but the field faces important challenges and opportunities in the future. These challenges and opportunities include changes in demographics and patterns of health, the need for a more comprehensive model of the domain of health behavior and prevention, the need to integrate behavioral and psychosocial risk and resilience, the incorporation of new technologies, and addressing a variety of professional and economic barriers to the implementation of prevention in health care.

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