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Planning Better Health for the Future

Top ten areas that may be considered most important to address in case budgetary restraints limit the study

  • Access to Quality Health Services
  • Cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Disability and Secondary Conditions
  • Family Planning
  • Immunization and Infectious Diseases
  • Maternal, Infant, and Child Health
  • Nutrition and Overweight
  • Physical Activity and Fitness
  • Substance Abuse

 (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2001).

Why choose these areas?

When looking for a long term solution to national health issue, in most cases the solution is not by offering cure to the affected people rather it is by providing prevention measures and creating public awareness. These top 10 areas that have been considered most important to tackle first in case of restraints in budgetary have been chosen based on how effective a long term strategy would solve issues in the area and the solution extends even to most of the other areas. For instance, a focus on family planning would extend solution to other areas in the Health People 2010 Program related to reproduction such as sexually transmitted diseases, HIV, and Maternal, Infant, and Child Health. Similarly, a focus on substance abuse would extend the solution to other areas in the Health People Program such as Tobacco Abuse, sexually transmitted diseases, mental health and mental disorders. On the same note, mental health can be used to merge several areas such as obesity, substance abuse, and Tobacco use.

Access to quality health care is usually indicated by possession of a health insurance; a health insurance is important in ensuring that individuals have access mostly to primary care providers. The presence of this is important in ensuring a reduction in health related issues especially to low income earners. Therefore this area should be one of principle areas of study as it can merge several other areas such as immunization and diabetes. This would be a good move when working to reduce expenses in the study.

Nutrition and overweight are linked to a number of health concerns including heart diseases, high blood pressure and cancer (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2001). Therefore in case of a limiting budget, these areas in healthy people 2010 can be merged and solved as a single issue. When selecting the areas, it is important to focus not only in reduction of cost but a focus on issues which affects majority of people today. Selecting areas which affect majority of population would make the study meaningful even when there are constrains in the budget. Cancer, diabetes, disability and Secondary Conditions, family Planning, Immunization and Infectious Diseases, Maternal, Infant, and Child Health, Physical Activity and Fitness, and Substance Abuse are the major health issues facing the larger population (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2001) and the same time they can merge several other areas. Therefore, choosing areas which are closely related to most of other areas in the program would help to work on a restrained budget since one such area complements several areas.

How would you develop a program and present it to an individual and a community?

One important fact to consider when developing a program meant for an individual and the community at the same time is that a community is made up of the collective attitude, behavior, and beliefs of people living in the community (Green & Ottoson, 2009). This makes an individual and his/her community inseparable. The program would focus more on an individual; this would help save resources in the sense that when every person in the community has been contacted, reaching the larger community becomes easy.

For instance, when preparing a nutrition program meant for a school, it is easier to first target the students as individuals and then bring them together in dealing with the issue. This way, time that will be used as well as the resources will be fewer than if the program started by dealing with the community. A new program in most cases is meant to improve a situation or introduce a new way of handling a situation in the community. Bearing this in mind, it is important to consider some factors before meeting an individual or the community to introduce the program. The key factors to consider are social, cultural, economical, and physical changes that the program will cause to the individual or the community (Green & Ottoson, 2009). The program would therefore be such that it is in line with the customs of the community so that it can be accepted by the people.

Discuss the impact of failure to achieve the goals of the chosen focus areas.

The most definite impact in case of failure to achieve the goals of these 10 chosen areas is poor quality of life in the nation well as reduced life expectancy. A good quality of life may be measured by satisfaction of people with their lifestyles, appreciation of the surrounding environment and a general sense of happiness (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2000). Good health is a key element in ensuring quality of life and as such, the lack of it is reflected through peoples’ appreciation of the kind of life they are living.

The other arguable impact is continued differences in the health status of people belonging to different demographic levels; gender, income level, race, geographic region, and education. This is because these are the major determinants of health status of people in a nation (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2000). In addition, failure to achieve the goals would mean a failure in a national action plan and since national resources are utilized in the implementation, failure to successfully implement the program would be a blow to the national economy.

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