Community Medicine is a branch of medicine dealing with healthcare issues affecting communities as a whole. It is concerned with the total health of the individual within the home environment and in the community, and with the application of comprehensive care to the prevention and treatment of illness in the entire community. “The art and science of application of technical knowledge and skills to the delivery of healthcare to a given community, designed in collaboration with related professions as well as human and social sciences on the one hand, and community on the other.” It deals with the study of health and disease in the defined community or group. Its goal is to identify the health problems and needs of people (community diagnosis) and to plan, implement and evaluate the effectiveness of health care system. WHO has suggested that every country should have its own definition of Community Medicine.
Welcome to the Department of Community Medicine! Clinical practice with community health perspective makes community medicine a unique specialty. In their health centers, community physicians not only implement disease prevention programs, assess community health needs, manage healthcare teams and advocate for health promoting policies but also diagnose and treat diseases. However, participation of community medicine faculty in the delivery of clinical care in primary health care facilities varies from place to place due to administrative constraints.
Health centers attached to medical colleges are not dependent on community medicine faculty for supervision as these centers have their own supervisors (district and regional medical officers); whereas, other clinical departments in medical colleges depend on their faculty for delivery of clinical care in the hospital. Consequently, a wrong perception is gaining ground that community medicine is a para-clinical specialty. Strategies for a fixed tenured rotation of faculty in the health centers should be evolved. All faculty members of community medicine must also provide clinical care in the health centers and the quantum of clinical services provided by each one of them should be reported to all stakeholders. Community medicine must ensure that trainee community physicians acquire competency to deliver comprehensive primary health care (promotive, preventive, curative, and rehabilitative) in a health center.
At IMTU the Community Medicine offers courses in Epidemiology & Research Methodology, Biostatistics & Demography, Community Medicine, Nutrition and Public Health to MBBS, BSc Medical Laboratory Technology and MPH students.