NURS4115 Role of the Nurse in Public and Global Health

NURS4115 Role of the Nurse in Public and Global Health

NURS4115 Role of the Nurse in Public and Global Health


Role of the Nurse in Public and Global Health

Week 3

Preventing Disease in Communities: The Role of Public
Health, the Silent Sentinel

Our “world” starts with our own community, county, and
state, then moves out in concentric rings from that point to include our
country and eventually the world. Disease is transmitted from person to person
through direct contact, or from a source such as a vector or contaminated water
through a variety of means, such as flood waters or even terrorist actions.
Individuals with limited or no knowledge of safe sex methods may have
unprotected sexual relations and knowingly or unknowingly transmit disease to
their partners, then to their partners’ partners, and on and on. Often it is
the role of the public health nurse to investigate a disease outbreak, contain
it, and then educate others so that the same situation doesn’t happen again.

In this Discussion, you will visit a site and interview
people who work there about risks for disease transmission, then report on your

To prepare, select which site you will visit from the
following options:

High school nurse’s office

Water treatment plant

Public health department

Pediatrician’s office

Create a brief description of your setting, providing some
context; for example, how many patients are seen, size or capacity of the
facility as applicable, and/or the location of the office or organization.

Take pictures of the building and surrounding
area/neighborhood to provide context. You do not have to include the interior/s
of the building/s or people/clients who may be there.

Then, during your site visit, pose the questions listed in
the following chart:

High school nurse

What is the school’s policy on giving students advice about
birth control?

How often do you get requests for information about birth
control or how to protect oneself from an STD?

How do you track vaccination compliance, and what happens to
students who fall out of compliance?

Local water treatment plant

Where does your community’s water come from?

Where is it stored?

How often is it tested for purity?

What safeguards are in place to prevent tampering with the
water supply?

Local public health department

Does this department have an STD clinic?

In addition to testing, does the department offer treatment
of one party or both parties?

What is the most frequently diagnosed STD?

A pediatrician’s office

What is your policy on accepting patients who refuse

What are the most common reasons parents decline
vaccinations for their children in this particular office?

What is the policy at this office for giving antibiotics to
treat viral syndromes?

Now, look at the site you visited through the eyes of the
public health nurse (PHN). Imagine you are the PHN and have been asked to
investigate an outbreak at this facility.

What questions would you ask?

What suggestions could you make to avoid a disease outbreak
at the facility?

What would your role as a change agent be for any
deficiencies you find in your on-site inspection?

By Day 3

Post your brief description and pictures of the site you
visited. Share the answers you were given to the questions you posed. Then,
respond to the above prompts through the eyes of a PHN asked to investigate an
outbreak at this facility.

Support your response with references from the professional nursing

NURS4115 Role of the Nurse in Public and Global Health

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