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The Epidemiological triad including agent, host, vector, and environment is a well-proved model of examing infectious disease causation. This model implies that an adverse environment may contribute to prevalence of many communicable diseases by providing habitats for vectors and inhibiting healthy behaviors. As a contrast, a good environment may promote human health by encouraging healthy behaviors and preventing growth and reproduction of vectors of diseases.

In ancient Greek and Rome, people already started actions to promote health by searching right places to live and improve urban environment to dimish harmful characters such as miasma and germs. In the late 90th century, cities in Europe started a process to build “grey infrastructure” to improve sanitary of urban settings such as sewerage systems. At the beginning of 20th century, the theory of germ took public health’s most attention that public health practice switched their focus from environmental factors to biomedical factors related to individuals’ health outcomes (Coutts & Taylor, 2011).

During recent decades, public health gradually realized the notion of solving health problems by focusing on vaccinating individuals from pathogens was not sufficient since environment also plays an crucial role in the framework and “organism’s functioning is mediated by behavior-environment interactions” (Green & Kreuter, 1999). In addition, there are other factors other than communicable diseases can influence human health outcomes. From that perspective, it is important to create living environments which can promote “health and healthy behaviors” (Coutts & Taylor, 2011).


Coutts, C. J., & Taylor, C. (2011). Putting the Capital “E” Environment Into Ecological Models of Health. [Editorial Material]. Journal of Environmental Health, 74(4), 26-29.