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essay about community health nursing

Community Nursing

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1. Define Healthy People 2020, Discuss Their Objectives/Goals

Healthy people, 2020 is a government initiative unveiled by the US Department of Health and Human Services to set up a ten-year plan for the promotion of health and disease prevention in the country. Healthy People has committed to improving the quality of the nation’s healthcare for three decades by having a framework for public health in which prevention, priorities, and action are accounted for more so when it comes to the aggregate expenditure of healthcare spending on preventable diseases. Reports have it that chronic diseases are responsible for seven out of ten deaths among Americans each year. With such statistics, the department of health seemed ahead for creating Healthy people who created a roadmap and directives for better health in the society. A survey conducted by the assistant secretary for health revealed that a majority of Americans were not reaching their full health potential due to the prevalence of preventable diseases, that’s why initiatives such as healthy people were vital to initiate and fund for the improvement of quality and quantity of American lives. The bottom line here is that the American nation was under the threat of high mortality rate for a long time caused by unhealthy lifestyle practices. The counter to such a threat was the one formed by the creation of Healthy People 2020 whose main aim was to forge a path to healthier living within a determined time frame (United States Department of Health and Human Services. 2014).

As part of an extensive privatized feedback process in the American health care that combines input from public health and prevention professionals, government officials, organizations, and the public, Healthy People 2020 had to have objectives and goals to attain their set agenda, this purpose include;

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Adolescent Health, which is a service concerned with the general health of America’s future generation that lies in the young ages of 10 through 18 years of age. The service aims to assist in disease prevention at this crucial period and abstinence from drugs and alcohol that has equal devastating results on health as diseases have. Blood disorders such as leukemia ought to be noted in the early stages of life to be equipped well enough to be able to handle the drawbacks involved. Through avenues of education on blood groups and types, the public has a better stance on understanding the differences of their blood and how to reduce dangers of transmitting diseases through transfusion in the case of accidents. Dementias such as Alzheimer’s disease that is prevalent in old people whereby they undergo a series of memory loss and could pose a danger to themselves and the people around them. Early and middle childhood, which are the most vulnerable moments in a human beings lifespan since the immune system is new to diseases and is prone to attacks of all kinds (United States Department of Health and Human Services. 2014).

Genomics too is part of Healthy People 2020 goals that deal specifically with the human genetic code; this involves gathering the required characteristics and weeding out undesired characters in the DNA. Global health includes caring for the international community as a collective human society as seen in cases such as the Ebola epidemic faced in Sierra Leone whereby hundreds of thousands of people died, and the United States was among the first respondent to tackle the virus. Quality of life that relates to health and wellbeing, which involves both physical and mental status. Healthcare associated infections, this deals with the diseases that are prone to attack a host while he/she is receiving treatment for another ailment. Gay and Transgender Healthcare provision. The elder population, preparedness, sleep health, and social determinants of health are among the list of objectives that Healthy People 2020 aim to handle (United States Department of Health and Human Services. 2014).

2. Research Your Local Department of Health.

Discuss Preventative Measures They Have in Place (Primary, Secondary and Tertiary)

Preventive measures that have been made by the Florida, Osceola County health department to improve the health situation of the citizens of Florida have been concisely aimed at spearheading the health capability per household in the following ways. First, the government of Florida has implemented primary prevention measures that include; legislative and enforcement of policies that ban the use of controlled substances such as asbestos. Health and safety mandates have been applied to ensure longer lifespan is attained through precautions that include wearing of safety gear while operating machinery, making use of safety belts while using commuter services. The state has also funded educational organizations to educate the citizens on practicing healthy habits such as eating a balanced diet, observing regular exercise, quitting bad habits (e.g., Smoking and drinking). Lastly, the state has invested heavily in purchasing of immunization drugs that are meant to fight infectious diseases (Floridahealth.gov.).

Other measures that have been practiced by the government of Florida include Secondary preventive measures that aim to reduce the impact caused by diseases or injuries that have already occurred. This secondary measure is performed by early detection and treatment of an illness or injury immediately it is spotted to slow down the progress, and initiating actions that equip the victim from encouraging further injury by implementing educational programs that benefit the ailing to return to their normal health. The secondary prevention measures include conducting regular screening to detect diseases at their early stages, prescribing low dose aspirins, diets and exercise to prevent vulnerable populations from heart attacks, and tailoring labor to suit injured workers to allow them a safe transition to work (Floridahealth.gov.).

Lastly, the state has set up tertiary prevention which aims at softening the impact of illnesses that are ongoing or injuries that have a permanent effect. By setting up support groups that allow the ailing population to communicate freely and share strategies that are applicable in managing their specific types of illnesses, the state has created a platform that enables patients to afford a cost friendly and informative rehabilitation. Also, rehab centers have been funded to accommodate the vast amount of ailing patients who suffer from addictions, cardiac arrests, dementia, and chronic diseases. The government has also set up programs that train workers on how to handle recovering patients (Floridahealth.gov.).

3. Discuss Health Disparities Among Different Cultural Groups in the Community

The mortality rate of a specific group of persons is significant if determining that particular group’s health status, they go hand in hand (Braveman, 2006). Racial or ethnic disparities is experienced in a majority of the institutions in the United States, and when it comes to health care provision, the situation is no different. Here in Florida, Osceola County the health outcomes between different ethnicity, genders, identity, age, disability, and socioeconomic status varies. To better understand this difference in health outcomes, we shall look into the infant mortality rate across races in the state (Harper, Rushani & Kaufman, 2012).

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Infant mortality refers to the early termination of a young child’s life which is within the first five years of life. And health disparity is the difference in burden of diseases including mortality and other adverse health conditions that exist among specific ethnicities. In the year 2009, the state of Florida’s infant mortality rate declined from 6.9 infant’s deaths per 1000 live births to 6.1 deaths per 1000 lives. It was at the same period that non-Hispanic infant mortality retained its stagnation of 4.9 infants’ deaths per1000 deliveries, not to mention in 2013 the infant graph had gone a notch higher at 5.0 infant deaths per 1000 births. Note that between the periods of 2009 to 2012, non-Hispanic black infant mortality declined from 12.7 to 10.5 infant deaths per 1000 live births. However, the statistical data identifies that the mortality rate remained the same for the coming year 2013 (Waidmann & Rajan, 2000).

The infant mortality difference between black and white non-Hispanic residence did reduce from the ration of 2.6:1 to 2.1:1 in the years 2009 and 2013 respectively. It is important to point out that despite the decline of black infant mortality in the period between 2009 and 2013, the rate of deaths have always been more than twice that of white and Hispanic infants. We must note that the disparities in infant mortality rates across ethnic divide are present with consistency at the national level, the infant mortality rates for non-Hispanic whites to the black population is 5.1:11.4 deaths per 1000 births whereby the ratio is 2.2:1.

4. Discuss Programs and Services Provided to Members of the Community

The state of Florida has a list of programs and services implemented to serve the neighborhood, and they include infant, child and adolescent health. This programs deal with breastfeeding, child care, screening, and many other aspects aimed at conditioning the young generation to practice a healthier lifestyle. Community Health deals with dental, refugee, and environmental health in general. This is the type of healthcare set up to ensure the safety of the public in general. Next, we have health departments that are designated county factions with the main aim of assisting state citizens regarding their collective status of health. Emergency preparedness and response, this program is divided into divisions such as; self-preparedness, community preparedness, disaster response resources, training, and exercise. Immunization programs have been championed and camp gained for by the state using its resources and through online websites that provide vaccination information. Men’s health, this initiative majorly deals with the male reproductive health. Health equity, this deals with the physical and spiritual measure of the health of a man. Medical marijuana use, there has been a user registry set up to identify the patients, physicians, and marijuana treatment centers. Licensing is now available with the least amount of bureaucracy encountered.

The state has also catered for persons living with disabilities by initiating programs that enable the affected to better their lives by realizing their potential. Preventive measures have also been a stronghold in ensuring healthier living in Florida, and this includes drowning prevention, flu prevention, sexual abuse prevention, human trafficking prevention, and drug-free Florida. The state has invested in setting up of laboratories where employment and educational opportunities arrive with frequency. Nutrition programs aimed at the combined population, women’s health, kid’s health, and organizational health and safety meant to be practiced by all silenced businesses.

5. Discuss Prevalent Diseases in the Community

The list is figuratively endless when it comes to mentioning illnesses that are common in the state of Florida, to begging with I would like to suggest the Adult Cystic Fibrosis whereby more than 150 adults have the disease. This illness is a genetic disease that causes the buildup of mucus in the body, therefore, clogging the organs in the body. The digestive system and lungs are the first organs to be affected by this ailment, and they are slowly damaged and finally result in failure to function appropriately (Floridahealth.gov.).

Arthritis is another disease that has been experienced in the state of Florida regardless of age playing a huge role in acquiring the illness. However, science has shown that physical activity can reduce the pain experienced and improve one’s mood and quality of function. Note that physical activity can help in the management of other chronic conditions that are prevalent among the seasoned generation. They include heart disease, obesity, and diabetes (Floridahealth.gov.).

Asthma, which is a chronic disease that causes respiratory problems can only be prevented but not cured. The disease is prevalent in Florida and is more common among children, women, low-income earners, African American, and Puerto Rican communities. Morbidity and mortality from this particular disease are very significant in addition to the impact on the quality of life lived. It is approximated that 1 in 12 Florida adults and 1 in 10 Florida children have the disease asthma. The costs of mitigating this chronic disease are catered for by the individual, healthcare system regarding Medicare and Medicaid, or the school system (Floridahealth.gov.).

To conclude this essay, I would like to point out that health initiatives such as Healthy People 2020, are a step forward in the evolution of healthcare goals, and if accomplished this could mean a whole new level for humankind about the healthcare sector. Therefore, with all the negative distractors that may prevent one from having a peek at a brighter future, it is worthwhile to note that the pursuit of excellence is not accomplished within a single day, but instead step by step through cooperation and meticulous planning.

6. Discuss environmental issues in the community

Environmental issues concerning community health in the state of Florida include a vast number of hazards that include. The decrease in the quality of air, monitoring of the purity of the precious gas oxygen has revealed a staggering amount of carbon monoxide pollution caused by the incomplete burning of carbon-based fuels such as charcoal, wood, kerosene, etc. (Floridahealth.gov.). The health impact includes acute carbon monoxide poisoning that results in a headache, nausea, and lethargy among other symptoms that resort to weakness and discomfort. The water quality has also decreased significantly with clean and drinkable water becoming scarcer to find; this is as a result of the policies set up that do not cater for public water systems in the safe drinking water act. Therefore, no legal action can be taken upon the poor standards of water in the state. Contain moments that include drywall, biomedical wastes, lead poisoning, and pesticide control among others, have plagued the country and thus affecting the daily living of its citizens (Floridahealth.gov).

To conclude this essay, I would like to point out that health initiatives such as Healthy People 2020, are a step forward in the evolution of healthcare goals, and if accomplished this could mean a whole new level for humankind about the healthcare sector. Therefore, with all the negative distractors that may prevent one from having a peek at a brighter future, it is worthwhile to note that the pursuit of excellence is not accomplished within a single day, but instead step by step through cooperation and meticulous planning.

1. Braveman, P. (2006). Health disparities and health equity: concepts and measurement. Annu. Rev. Public Health, 27, 167-194.

2. Floridahealth.gov. (n.d.). Diseases and Conditions | Florida Department of Health. [online] Available at: http://www.floridahealth.gov/diseases-and-conditions/index.html [Accessed 4 Dec. 2017].

3. Harper, S., Rushani, D., & Kaufman, J. S. (2012). Trends in the black-white life expectancy gap, 2003-2008. Jama, 307(21), 2257-2259.

4. National Cancer Institute. (2010). Health Disparities Defined. Retrieved May 23, 2014, from http://crchd.cancer.gov/disparities/defined.html.

5. United States Department of Health and Human Services. (2014, May 23). Disparities. Retrieved May 24, 2014, from HealthyPeople.gov: http://healthypeople.gov/2020/about/disparitiesAbout.aspx

6. Waidmann, T. A., & Rajan, S. (2000). Race and ethnic disparities in health care access and utilization: an examination of state variation. Medical Care Research and Review, 57(1_suppl), 55-84.

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