Nursing Experience Working With Communities And Populations

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I have two examples I would like to share that reflect my nursing experience working with communities and populations. One is my experience volunteering as a nurse for a community health clinic in Belize. The other is my current job as a Heart Failure (HF) RN Navigator at Providence Centralia Hospital. These experiences have helped me see firsthand the many factors that influence the health of communities. They have also revealed many of the challenges faced by nurses and other health professionals who work to improve the health of populations. Many factors impact the health of a community. Obvious factors include those related to health and social services, such as the availability of quality health care facilities, like hospitals,…show more content…
Access to quality schools, school health facilities, school lunch programs, sports, and higher education impact community health. Healthy communities also need to be safe, with fire and police services, good sanitation services, safe air and water, and access to public transportation. The local political environment impacts the health of a community, including the local government, influential people and organizations in the community and the level of community involvement in elections and political organizations. Healthy communities need to be able to communicate and disseminate information. This can include local newspapers, radio, and television, but also access to telephone service and the internet. Finally, economic and demographic factors impact the health of communities, such as the types of occupations and industries, the number of unemployed, the number of children or elderly, the number of retired or disabled, the number of people with health insurance, the income level, and income distribution. For the past three years, I volunteered with a group of doctors and nurses to staff a medical clinic that traveled to underserved villages in Belize. Belize has a nationalized health care system, so in theory the public has primary and preventative care available to them. But, access to this care can be limited for many of the residents who live
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