Medical Issues

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Globally, the fact that I have never attended a child's funeral is an anomaly: In 1990 more than one in ten children in the world died before the age of 5, however about 90% of Americans survived to their 50th birthday. While we have moved towards closing that gap, these statistics still mark a gross disparity. People debate our obligation to provide medical care globally to those who cannot afford it, but most of the world's medicals need are shockingly inexpensive. To me, there is no debate: it takes only pennies worth of clean water and re-hydration salts to prevent an individual from dying of diarrhea, the second leading killer of children, and we, as global citizens, have a moral obligation to provide this basic care. It is a tragic…show more content…
Still others are collecting dried cow dung for cooking fuel. Identify the needs that you see in this community from the perspective of a student of public health and medicine. There are several issues that stand out to my untrained eye in this image. The first is not directly a public health issue, but education related: these children are playing in the street at mid day, so they are likely not enrolled in school, which suggests low literacy rates in the community for at least a generation to come. This detrimentally impacts health care because without written instructions, patient education needs to be entirely face to face, rather than face to face interaction supplanted by instructions left for later consultation. This could significantly hinder medical care in this region, as it constrains the means through which health education and medical information can be disseminated. Overall, the low literacy would reduce the effectiveness of each clinician's personal interactions and advice to the patients. Another prominent issue is the water supply. If it needs to be transported from a remote area, water will be scarce for washing and hygiene, leading to increased incidence of both respiratory and gastrointestinal infections--especially among children. Also contributing to the gastrointestinal illness rate will be water contamination. Even if the water is clean at the source (perhaps it is from a deep well, rather than frequently

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