Skip to main content

Table 1 Matrix of population-level preventative public health interventions

From: The effects of public health policies on population health and health inequalities in European welfare states: protocol for an umbrella review

Prevention type Primary prevention Secondary prevention
Type of intervention Fiscal measures Regulation Education, communication and information Preventative treatment Screening
Description Using market forces to change demand for products deemed healthy/unhealthy Making and enforcing regulation to encourage/discourage products and services deemed healthy/unhealthy Using mass media campaigns to encourage/discourage products and services deemed healthy/unhealthy Offering population-wide measures to eradicate infectious diseases Offering age-appropriate population-level screening for certain diseases
Domains Scope of domains      
Tobacco Protecting people from second-hand smoke and raising tobacco prices through taxation   
Alcohol Increasing the price limits of alcohol and availability and bans on advertising   
Food and nutrition Regulating supplements of trace minerals (e.g. iodine and fluoride) and tackling nutrition-related risk factors of cardiovascular diseases   
Reproductive health services Fertility (access to contraception and safe abortion, prevention of multiple births in assisted reproduction), pregnancy (protection of pregnant women and children, preventive care in the prenatal period, screening for congenital anomalies), delivery and postpartum care (access to safe delivery care, promotion of breastfeeding)  
The control of infectious diseases Protecting the health of the public from new or persisting threats, securing what has been achieved (e.g. system breakdown during economic crises or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus).     
Screening Cancer screening (cervical, breast, colorectal and prostate screening, etc.) and screening for CVD risk factors (e.g. hypertension prevention and control)     
Mental health The human rights perspective, scope of mental health policy, intervening with those at risk, intervening with the process of suicide     
Road traffic injuries Controlling speed, stopping driving when under the influence of alcohol, enforcing use of safety equipment, increasing conspicuousness, improving vehicle crash protection, making infrastructural changes to road design     
Air, land and water pollution Effectiveness of air pollution control policies (sulphur dioxide, particulate matter, nitrogen oxides, ozone). Land and water pollution control policies such as land decontamination     
Workplace regulations Working week regulations, workplace health and safety legislation (e.g. around exposures to noise and vibrations)