Identified Health Issues
The windshield survey revealed unhealthy eating habits among the population due to prevalence of many fast food outlets in the community compared to other amenities such as farmers’ markets and grocery stores. The types of food sold in these outlets often lead to lifestyle diseases. Additionally, it was observed that 17.9% of the people in Miami live below poverty line, leading to prostitution and other social vices such as crime and idleness. Prostitution is a health issue since exposure to commercial sex often leads to sexually transmitted diseases and HIV/AIDS.
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The Nursing Process
Available literature demonstrates that the nursing process is basically “an organized systematic approach used by nurses to meet the individualized health care needs of their patients” (Yildirim & Ozkaliraman, 2011 p. 261). The process employs systematic phases, namely assessment, diagnosis, outcomes identification, planning, implementation and evaluation, to provide humanistic care that is focused on attaining desired outcomes in a cost-effective manner. Here, the nursing process is used to develop an educational plan to deal with the two health issues identified within the Miami Community.
The Educational Plan
- Collect and examine information about the health status of community members
- Critically assess the risk factors associated with fast foods and prostitution by looking for evidence of lifestyle and sexually transmitted diseases
Diagnosis (Problem Identification)
- Analyze the available information with the view to comprehensively understanding the stated health issues and the demographics involved (World Health Organization, 2012; Yildirim & Ozkaliraman, 2011)
In these phases (assessment, diagnosis and problem identification), it is important for the nursing professional not only to collect and examine information about the health status of the community as well as the risk factors demonstrated. But also to identify actual and potential problems related to the identified health issues (Yildirim & Ozkaliraman, 2011), and demographic information (e.g., age, socioeconomic status, residency etc) of community members most at risk of being affected by the health issues (Whitehead, 2003). This information is critical in the development of an efficient educational plan to deal with the health issues.
The planning phase in the nursing process is a critical phase, whereby the nursing professional determines the immediate priorities to deal with the health issues, establishes achievable outcomes, determines the interventions to use in achieving the outcomes, and adopts a plan of care which may either be individualized or standardized (World Health Organization, 2012). The two health issues (lifestyle diseases brought about by many fast food outlets and STDs brought about by prostitution) need immediate attention, which can be undertaken through a multidisciplinary approach. The time-frame for the education plan to start bearing fruits is pegged at one year.
In this section, carefully prepared posters and community outreach programs on the health issues identified should be rolled out and targeted at individuals most at risk depending on their age, socioeconomic status and other demographic attributes. The posters and programs should enlighten members on the health issues and what could be done to minimize their occurrence. Successful health education should be age-specific (World Health Organization, 2012), hence the need to focus the educational posters and outreach programs on individuals most likely to visit fast food outlets as well as girls in low-end neighborhoods who are most likely to enter into prostitution due to poverty.
This is the last phase of the education plan according to the nursing process. Here, it is important to
- determine whether the desired outcomes have been achieved and whether the designed interventions were effective,
- assess if there are new care priorities that need to be addressed within the community, and
- undertake a reassessment of the total education plan not only to determine whether the expected outcomes were accurate and effective, but also to seal loopholes and facilitate positive behavior change improvements in the community (World Health Organization, 2012; Yildirim & Ozkaliraman, 2011).
Whitehead, D. (2003). Evaluating health promotion: A model for nursing practice. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 41(5), 490-498.
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World Health Organization. (2012). Health education: Theoretical concepts, effective strategies and core competencies.
Yildirim, B., & Ozkaliraman, S. (2011). Critical thinking in nursing process and education. International Journal of Humanities and Social Science, 1(13), 257-262.