Domhnall MacAuley is a CMAJ Associate Editor and a professor of primary care in Northern Ireland, UK.
Liveability. What a cool, trendy word that immediately paints a vibrant picture in your mind. We know instinctively what it means as it conjures up an image of a healthy environment, an active lifestyle and personal wellbeing. No surprise, therefore that its used in advertising to sell everything from domestic products to real estate. If, on the other hand, we talk about the social determinants of health, most people don’t really know what we mean and they switch off. But, liveability gives us a common language to explain how there is so much more to health than just medicine.
This was a recurring theme at the conference on Creating Active and Liveable Societies hosted by the Centre of Excellence for Public Health in Belfast with a host of international experts. ...continue reading