Saturday, September 25 , 2021

Role of Nurses in Leveraging Preventative Health Care

The old saying, ‘prevention is better than cure,’ has always proven to be true. It is obvious that children and older adults are more prone to diseases. One definite reason is that children have underdeveloped immune systems. In contrast, older adults face a lower immunity as a sign of aging. The younger population can also fall sick, but their bodies bounce back quickly compared to the other age groups. However, in the current time of uncertainties, contracting or falling victims to chronic diseases is also getting common. These chronic diseases lower the quality of life and negatively affect the healthcare budget due to expensive treatments. 

Healthcare sectors thrive on the budget allocated to them, and fulfilling the needs of every patient with a fixed budget is indeed a challenge. The hospital management has to take measures for the crumbling financial situation in healthcare sectors, and preventative care has become their preferred solution. 

What does preventative health care mean?

The common perception associated with the term preventative health care revolved around measures taken to prevent the spread of disease. However, the concept of preventative health care is not limited to this. It entails a holistic approach to a patient’s health. It can prevent diseases or health conditions before their development with an intended goal of prioritizing patients’ wellness.

Whenever we visit a hospital, we spend more time giving details to nurses or interacting with them. They are the trained individuals equipped with skills and knowledge regarding a patient’s health and well-being. They play a vital role in providing quality care and ensuring patients’ satisfaction. 

However, with the rise in the spread of various diseases, many nurse practitioners look for opportunities to increase their knowledge by enrolling in Post Master’s certificate online to expand their career pathway. It further helps them to remain updated on the new developments in healthcare. With continuing, medical education nurses can contribute to the preventative health care of patients. This article provides details regarding the role of nurses in providing preventative health care.

  1. Guide and Educate Patients Regarding Health Issues

Nurses have multidisciplinary knowledge, and they manage a significant part of the patient care advised by the doctor. Based on their daily interaction with patients, nurses are well aware of patients’ background and their knowledge about their health conditions. Preventative health care emphasizes educating patients about their health conditions and its management. By educating patients and their caregivers about the disease, its causes, and protective measures, nurses contribute to reducing health care costs and improving the health of thousands of patients. Preventative care measures go beyond the hospital walls. Educating patients about post-hospital care helps significantly in reducing their revisits regarding recurrent health issues.

  • Identify Symptoms to Control Disease Development

Patients’ knowledge about different health conditions and their symptoms can save them from many health adversaries. Knowing symptoms and rushing to the hospital at the right time contributes to the early detection of diseases. Nurses focus on identifying signs or patterns for disease development. They monitor vitals or perform screening procedures to detect the early onset of diseases. Screen measures like diagnostic laboratory tests, sonography, or skincare screenings can help control various diseases’ adverse effects. Doing so will also diminish the chances of severe diseases like Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) from occurring.

  • Provide Constant Care For Disease Management 

Nurses responsible for providing preventative health care focus on limiting the consequential damage resulting from the already manifested health condition. For instance, a person suffering from hypertension is more likely to develop heart diseases if left untreated or uncontrolled. Nurses can help by managing these symptoms and their effects to prevent the onset of comorbid situations for further damage. Chronic health conditions can lead to other severe health issues like heart diseases, liver damage, and stroke in severe cases. Constant monitoring of the disease progression can help prevent the adverse effects arising from a pre-existing disease.

  • Promote Behavioral Changes 

Many diseases or ailments that have already occurred require some external efforts to slow down their progression or prevent it from worsening. Nurse practitioners can guide patients about healthier choices or lifestyle changes to manage symptoms and prevent the disease from getting complicated. Guiding patients to correct posture while exercising or telling them about muscle movements can help them develop an exercise routine. Nurses can also help patients manage their weight, reducing the risk of heart diseases and stroke. 

  • Enables Better Access To Health Care 

Many patients do not know about the details of healthcare plans available out there. It may lead them to let go of the preventative services offered in their healthcare plan. Many patients refrain from visiting hospitals, fearing high costs and bills leading to adverse health conditions and complex diseases. Nurses are the best guide for patients, and their knowledge about the healthcare facilities makes them the best solution for patients seeking information about their health. Nurse practitioners can explain the details of healthcare plans and connect them to service providers for better understanding. Nurses can help patients to navigate and understand the healthcare system and make the most of it.

Conclusion

Nurses play a substantial role in addressing the health care inequalities and grapple with challenges of community health. Their interaction with patients coming from different backgrounds enables them to have a realistic insight into the situations prevailing in a community. Preventative care has become an increasingly popular area in the healthcare system. It has proven to be effective in reducing costs and assisting patients in their better health care routines.

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