At the first International Conference for Health Promotion, Canada presented "Achieving Health for All: A Framework for Health Promotion". This document reflects current thinking and proposes a conceptual base for the analysis of contemporary and emerging health issues. The approach is founded on the principles of health promotion developed by the World Health Organization and assimilates the themes which subsequently emerged in the Ottawa Charter. As such, Canada's framework presents a context for discussing chronic illnesses and for identifying opportunities that will lead to an intersectoral course of action. The salient features of this framework (Fig. 1) are briefly discussed.