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Acta Medica Colombiana

Print version ISSN 0120-2448


MARTINEZ, Octavio. Epidemiology in search of social context. Acta Med Colomb [online]. 2012, vol.37, n.2, pp.93-96. ISSN 0120-2448.

Failure of preventive strategies to modify unhealthy individual and community practices has been attributed to the epidemiology of risk factors with the individuality of its measurements in a social vacuum, given its restrictive approach, circumscribed to "objective" and strong risk factors that don't consider group variables and that estimates as marginal for epidemiological investigation the generation of historic, social, economic, political, cultural and gender determinants which influence the health of populations. This epidemiology with biomedical orientation, close to hospitalary medicine centered in biological, molecular and physicochemical laboratory procedures, and in synergy with attitudes derived from individualism of lifestyles, is confronted with theoretical epidemiological alternatives pretending to be more comprehensive and systemic, able to come up to causal explanations and of health distribution patterns and disease in the population from the multidimensionality of social, psychological, political, economic and cultural determinants, on which we must act to avoid and correct social health inequities. (Acta Med Colomb 2012; 37: 93-96)

Keywords : risk factors; social determinants; epidemiology.

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