The health development of African communities.
From 1965 to 1978, the author made numerous formal addresses in conjunction with his duties as the World Health Organization's (WHO) Regional Director for Africa. The addresses provide a theoretical and practical foundation for the development of a health care strategy and are grouped in sections concerning general policy, ways and means, health services delivery and development, disease control, and training and development of health team personnel. Health development in African nations demands planning for the implementation of health services to meet local community needs and appropriate training and utilization of health care personnel. The ultimate goal of health development is social justice, defined as the proper amount of health care available to all. The benefits will be realized in increased labor productivity and economic development, better quality of life, and self reliance in African nations. To achieve social justice, African nations must abandon foreign concepts of medical care and develop their own solutions to health problems that are realistic for their populations. Through the application of the techniques of scientific management and the development of cooperative international forums, these solutions can be discovered. Planning, aided by the development of information systems, research, and regional cooperation, is vital to assure both curative and preventive health programs are delivered that meet the health services needs of the population. Disease control is important to the economic development of African nations. Preventive action can be realized through planning and organized delivery of health services, including immunization programs, which enhance the population's general health status. Where prevention is not possible, early detection followed by swift response is an objective of effective health services. Training of health care and service personnel should focus on preparing professionals to contribute to the welfare of the community and to African development. The development of the health care team, which encompasses traditional and nontraditional personnel, adequately utilizes available resources and is responsive to both curative and preventive health needs.