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Epidemiology Essay

2309 words - 10 pages

Aleyamma John

Epidemiology: Global and Public Health


Community Emergency Preparedness and Response

20 February, 2012

Amy Reagan, MSN, RN

Community Emergency Preparedness and Response

This paper describes in detail the community preparedness and emergency response. Season 2, Episode 5 explains about the events that took place in the Neighborhood during the forest fire. This paper will also illustrate the problems faced in the Neighborhood during a disaster and the role of various community health services. The various community services can impact members within a community and prepare them for any emergent situation.

This episode goes on ...view middle of the document...

The Bley house is run by Jimmy, a 78- year- old Native American retired veteran who served as electronic technician in the Army. His medical problems consists of a moderate emphysema and hearing loss. The disaster has prevented him from going outdoors. His wife Cecelia, a 75- year- old Native American who is a homemaker lives with him. She suffers from osteoarthritis, and is on treatment currently.

Role of public health care teams in the Neighborhood

“Public health nursing is defined as the practice of protecting and promoting the health of populations using knowledge from nursing, social, and public health sciences” (Stanhope & Lancaster, 2008, p. 61). A number of local health agencies played an important role in helping people with the local disaster. The forest fire raised health problems related to the respiratory system. The pollutants in the air due to the fire and smoke exacerbated asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, and other breathing problems. The school nurse, Violet helped children at the Neighborhood middle and high school with any respiratory signs and symptoms such as shortness of breath, cough, tachypnea, and wheeze. The local Senior Center also saw an increase in elderly population with breathing troubles. More number of people had to be dependent on oxygen and had complaints of cough. The Geriatric nurses helped the patients at the Senior Centre to tackle problems created by the fire. The Neighborhood local hospital took the major hit due to the forest fire. The emergency created a crisis situation in which there was a sudden influx of patients and shortage of beds. This resulted in stressful situations. The community health nurses could not find an appropriate solution for this problem. They did their best to treat and relieve the patients of their respiratory distress. The fire increased the number of people with emphysema and asthma. As there was a constant need for beds patients had to be quickly transferred or discharged. This resulted in patients being discharged earlier that they would have been if there was adequate number of beds.

Other Public health agencies that could have assisted

Fighting a disaster is not a one man task. “This level of knowledge—to enable public health agencies to anticipate, prepare for, recognize, and respond to terrorist threats or natural disasters such as hurricanes or floods—has required a level of interstate and federal-local planning and cooperation that is unprecedented for these agencies” (Stanhope & Lancaster, 2008, p. 61). It is the combined effort of everyone together as team. This can be achieved only when the entire staff of public health agencies work toward one common goal, which is to promote and protect health. One major health problem created by the fire was an increase in respiratory problems within the community. There was an evident rise in the number of sick patients at the Neighborhood hospital and a shortage of staff as well...

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