The Public Health Ambassador program aims to emphasize the shared role and responsibility of all sectors of society and its individuals in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi in order to enhance the health and wellbeing of all the individuals and encourage them to adopt healthy lifestyles. This is underpinned by the fact that interaction of community members with preventive measures is lower than expectations as demonstrated by the low demand for some preventive services such as (Screening programs), dental consultations, and vaccination as well as lifestyle factors such as lack of physical activity and unhealthy diets.
Direct communication strategy is considered one of the most important communication strategies in health promotion because of its clear impact on convincing individuals of the need for change.
Peers (friends or relatives) represent an influential factor in formulating individual decisions and supporting behavior change. Developed countries invest in the areas of promoting individual health, “health ambassadors” or “peer to peer” programs, by recruiting eligible volunteers who are trained and become qualified to give health information. Training includes key health promotion concepts, messages, knowledge of local health services, and effective communication skills in order for them to influence and motivate their peers to adopt healthier lifestyles.
The "Public Health Ambassador" program invests in people and qualifies them so they can support the adoption of healthy practices to influence, motivate, and participate in the change phase towards adopting healthy lifestyles.
Public health ambassadors are neither advisors nor mentors, but rather trained individuals who contribute to disseminating concepts, information, and services that have been made available and advertised by the Abu Dhabi Public Health Center. They will do this in a manner that is in line with their surroundings and peers while participating and motivating others to lead and enjoy a healthy lifestyle such as being physically active and going for regular health check-ups amongst others.
Objectives of the Public Health Ambassadors Network:
Enhancing knowledge about the health concerns of the community.
Encouraging community members to practice healthy lifestyles through peers.
Increasing the community's ability to access existing health programs, services, and resources.
Developing a network of health ambassadors and promoters in the various regions of the emirate