Medical Care Access, Diagnostic Evaluation

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Statistical data reveals that 25% of adult Americans have a mental illness and more than half of the U.S. population will develop a mental illness at some point during their lifetime (CDC; APA). "Major Depressive disorder is a leading cause of disability for ages 15-44. Major depressive disorder affects approximately 14.8 million American adults or 6.7 percent of the U.S. population age 18 and older in a given year” while anxiety affects …40 million…adults ages 18 and older…” (NIMH; APA). Comparatively, cardiovascular, diabetes, epilepsy, obesity, cancer, and asthma, and other chronic diseases are surfacing with increased frequency among the mentally ill (CDC; APA). The aforementioned finding elicits question about medical care …show more content…

Patient encounters in cardiology practicum afforded extended latitude to embrace nursing competencies relative to direct clinical practice, consultation, research, clinical and professional leadership, collaboration, and ethical decision making, which are applicable and fundamental to the role of the advanced practice nurse. Further experiences in both cardiology and medical-surgical provided opportunity to "connect-the-dots," via the use of physical assessment skills as correlated to illness and pathological findings. (Self-evaluation reflects sound clinical/assessment skills and a good grasp of pathophysiological conditions.) Clinical experiences in hospice and palliative care provided opportunity to view health care from the dichotomous spectrum of life and death, with understanding that not only should one be afforded a quality life, but also a quality and dignified death. An issue of contention for this clinician has always been the unilateral focus of medical care without attention to the psychological framework that governs physiological states. Working in Hospice and palliative care was enlightening as it allowed for introspection and exploration of feelings that might otherwise remain untapped unless personally faced with a effectiveness in addressing the needs of the terminally-ill. Psych work history (inpatient) encompasses

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