Miami, Florida, is believed to be one of those locations people from all over the world want to visit, and this fact is not surprising as living conditions in it are rather good. For instance, the selected community (Miami Dade County) is well-developed and full of educational opportunities. The majority of the population has satisfactory social and economic conditions. Nevertheless, seniors can be identified as the most vulnerable population. Special attention should be paid to those of them who have some impartments and lack access to healthcare facilities. Due to this information, the purpose of the paper will be to reveal the peculiarities of the vulnerable population represented by the elderly and discuss a community health issue that affects their well-being. It is believed that this work can be used for the development of a solution that can be facilitated by a community health nurse.
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Vulnerable Population Overview
Seniors tend to be the main representatives of vulnerable populations in many locations, and Miami is not an exception. Nevertheless, this community implemented numerous initiatives to enhance their well-being. Unfortunately, those individuals who have particular needs remained in the group of people who can be easily affected by unfavorable events and conditions. In Miami Dade County, several people with hearing issues are seen. In addition to that, seniors with wheelchairs are observed. Those of them who have families can receive additional assistance that allows them to enhance their lives. However, seniors who live alone and have impairments often face issues when accessing healthcare facilities. Even though many hospitals and public transport means are equipped to serve people with disabilities, this issue is not totally resolved. Moreover, lonely seniors with impairments face difficulties with food and medicine supply. Even having a decent economic condition, they cannot obtain needed things and require assistance from volunteers.
Strengths, Risk Factors, and/or Barriers
Even though the selected vulnerable population lacks access to healthcare facilities and faces issues associated with food and medicine supply, it has some possibilities to maintain satisfying well-being. First of all, the majority of these people live in their own homes, which proves that their economic condition is good enough to afford a separate accommodation. Moreover, many places are adjusted for individuals with disabilities in Miami Dade County. In this way, they have an opportunity to move around the community without any critical issues. It is also important to pay attention to the fact that neighbors look friendly and seem to be ready to assist each other.
Nevertheless, it is significant to remember that seniors can face issues when moving, which makes it more difficult for them to come to the desired location (Syed, Gerber, & Sharp, 2013). Those who have hearing issues or use wheelchairs are at increased risk of being injured while spending time outdoors. Except for accidental falls, they can get into a car accident because if the inability to hear a car or move fast enough to avoid it. Moreover, those buildings that have only stairs can hardly be accessed by people with wheelchairs. In this way, vulnerable populations can be negatively affected by their environment.
Seniors and disabled adults who live in Miami Dade Community have a chance to contact volunteer organizations that provide them with an opportunity to reach the required resources and enhance their well-being. In particular, the selected vulnerable population can benefit if it contacts the United HomeCare. It facilitates people’s independence and wellness, ensuring that they can access everything they need and avoid premature placement in nursing homes. This organization “has been dedicated to improving the quality of life of older (60+) and disabled adults (18-59)” since 1974 (VolunteerMatch, 2018, para. 3). United HomeCare (2018) provides those services that are adequate for the vulnerable group, as they include not only healthcare-related services but also companionship, chores, and home-delivered meals, etc.
Community Health Problem Diagnosis
The main community health problem that should be considered by a community health nurse is the lack of access to healthcare facilities by seniors and individuals with disabilities. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (2017), one of the Healthy People 2020 objectives can be discussed in this framework: “AHS-6 Reduce the proportion of persons who are unable to obtain or delay in obtaining necessary medical care, dental care, or prescription medicines” (para. 4). Focusing on it, a nurse should identify those individuals who face issues with getting in contact with healthcare professionals themselves. Using this list, he/she can contact volunteer organizations and ask them for assistance.
Thus, it can be concluded that those citizens who live in Miami Dade Community tend to have good living and health conditions. Nevertheless, seniors and people with disabilities represent the vulnerable population of this community because they have issues with accessing healthcare facilities, food, and medicine supply. Even though many things are adjusted to their needs, particular buildings and public transport means remain inaccessible. To overcome this problem, seniors and individuals with impairments should receive assistance from community health nurses and volunteer organizations. Only in this way, the existing problem can be overcome, and people’s well-being can be improved.
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Syed, S., Gerber, B., & Sharp, L. (2013). Traveling towards disease: Transportation barriers to health care access. Journal of Community Health, 38(5), 976-993.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2017). Healthy People 2020: Topics and objectives. Web.
United HomeCare. (2018). Services. Web.
VolunteerMatch. (2018). United HomeCare. Web.