Community health assessment

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Introduction

Community health assessment is the process of engaging the community in yielding information useful for determining the general health conditions of people in the society. The health status includes the current situation and the predisposing risk factors (Bilton, 2011). Data collected is analyzed using scientific methods and interpreted to give clinical outcomes such as health disparities, and to unleash the available resources to meet needs in order of priority.

It is paramount to make the best choices as far as a community is concerned, further health is a critical issue to both poor and rich. Health improvement should be a continuous process. Improvement on priorities that can help guide and inform providers, public officials, and other stakeholders committed to achieving population health gains (Catholic Health Association (CHA), 2011).

Past research already conducted and documented is used for the assessment of the societies health. Historical information is relevant because it shows the changes that have taken place e over time in the field of health.  Analyzed data indicates the strategies used in the past and their effectiveness. The challenges experienced and the recommendations too, the health care providers and other stakeholders to plan and come up with a viable strategy (Bilton, 2011). The human resource is a vital resource because of the experiences they have acquired over time can be utilized in the implementation of a plan. The existing technology integrated enhances safety and efficient communication.

Assessment Community Health Needs

Health is a public affair which involves the participation of many stakeholders. A health assessment conducted for the purpose of understanding the health status of people and the quality of life in a given community (Bilton, 2011). This evaluation is a point of reference applicable in monitoring the effectiveness of implemented projects regarding health. For successful assessment, the health workers collect information at the local level, which is the submitted to the regional and after that to the national level. Information gathering is emphasized at the local level because people from different region experience life differently at the health needs are different. The collected data is used to come up with implementation strategies that best suits the community as well as appropriate funding based on the needs.

The implementation of the plan involves setting priorities at the local, regional and the national level. Priorities are set depending on the need basis and available resources. Alignment of opportunities takes place followed by a close monitoring of the performance of the strategy. Reports are written and documented for future reference and accountability purposes (Lenz, 2004).

Strengths and Weakness in the Formulation of a Health Strategy

In the implementation of the health care strategy, the acquisition and incorporation of information technology in the operations of health care organizations reduces medical errors hence improving safety and efficiency. According to Lenz (2004), health and the medical industry is information intensive because of the multiple stakeholders such as the insurers, the state agencies, care deliverers as the patients. Therefore enhanced technology would make the communication and interactions of these groups mare productive.

Opportunities for Health Improvement

Health professional shortages, this is a major challenge in the implementation of the strategy. Caregiving staff in organizations is less than the required number, the work pressure is high, and they cannot meet the expected standard of a new strategy. The local and national government in Florida should, therefore, invest in the education plan of health professional and well as reimbursement to encourage more people to join the medical field. Accreditation standards for local public health agencies maximize the limited resources (CHA, 2011).

According to the CHA (2011), children are living in poverty, infants are susceptible to diseases and are most affected by poor living standards, hit the low-income earners at Orange Park. Their children suffer nutritional conditions, and other illness contracted from the environment. Empowering single mothers and children from poor backgrounds is an opportunity to improve health in the society.

Creating awareness on infectious diseases and how to help the affected can improve the health status of the community. The youth are most affected by substance abuse. Therefore, enlightenment on effects of drug addiction conducted at the college level is useful. Rehabilitation centres can also be funded to increase the capacity they accommodate at a time so that those in extreme drug and substance abuse reinstated (Bilton, 2011). The prevalence of chronic diseases such as diabetes has affected Florida and Orange Park mainly, whereas improving awareness of healthy reduces the chances of diabetes. Disease prevention campaigns made accessible to the local people boost their willingness to participate in large numbers.

Barriers to the Implementation of a Community Health Strategy

The health care system has been a victim of individuals who talk more and do less. The investigation did on the health care system and; little is put to practice making the research and expensive encounter and time wasting activity (Bilton, 2011). Cultural and social norms that revolve around health behaviours impede health strategy. Health literacy levels and educational disparities are a huge barrier that can be overcome by mass education through the broadcasting channels and creation of awareness on various medical issues. There is a big gap between the rich and the poor in Florida. The wealthy can access health services, but the poor cannot afford the services.

There are limited resources for infrastructure and information technology devices that would make the analysis of researchers easier and simpler, as well as improve the sharing of information among the participants in a health care system (Lenz, 2004). The transport services should be developed to reduce the amount of time wasted by the caregivers as they attend to patients or programs in different parts of Florida.

Financial challenges impede strategy implementation as there is pressure on the limited finances available yet faced with uncertainty in the collection of revenue. Tax collection is crucial in the management of quality services.

Conclusion

Achievement of public health improvements is through the collective effort of every individual and the concerned stakeholders in public health.  Individuals are required to change their behaviours and embrace diversity. Leaders are a huge determinant of the process of change because they are expected to initiate change and develop norms for the team to follow. Policy enactment stimulates change and is backed up by organizational policies. Funding should be done to promote health screening to cater for the poor who cannot afford to pay for the programs and yet are the most affected due to poor housing and inadequate diet. Prevention funds should be set aside for the prevention health screening and a further extension of the research conducted (CHA, 2011).

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  1. Bilton, M. (2011). Community health needs assessment. trustee, 9(64), 21-24.
  2. Catholic Health Association. (2011). Assessing & Addressing Community Health Needs.
  3. Lenz, R. K. (2004). Towards a continuous evolution and adaptation of information systems in healthcare. Int J Med Inform.
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