Health Determinants

Topics: Health, Nursing, Health care Pages: 5 (1435 words) Published: July 1, 2013

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Health Determinants
Health plays an important factor in the everyday life. In our society, there are those who stay healthy while others always unhealthy. In the field of nursing, it is important to find out reasons as to why lack of health is a continuing problem in the society. This is the key to becoming effective in the sector. The parameters that define health are known as health determinants. These range from social, economic, personal, and environmental factors. This is an important topic as it holds the key to the professional nursing practise. Dealing with health issues is no longer an easy affair as it was earlier. In the past, people believed that health issues could only be dealt with in the hospital. The best way to deal with such cases was only medical in nature (Craven & Hirnle, 2009).

At present, it is evident that there are a number of factors that come into play to define health. Good health can only be achieved when all the above mentioned factors balance well. This brings us to the field of nursing. Understanding health determinants would help effectively and professionally give care to those who are in need of it. The key to excellent care giving depends on the understanding of different health factors that affect the client. Without proper understanding of such, the probability of giving wrong care is high. Moreover, public policies and the present political ideologies are not factors to be wished away when it comes to health care. For this assignment, the major health determinants dealt with are: culture, individual health practices and coping skills, and hand hygiene. These are important factors that are particularly relevant in the nursing profession. They seem to be very insignificant in general, but are crucial when it comes to health, they play major roles. Lack of attention towards them has led to the continued deteriorating health in some individuals, families, and even communities. This explains the reason for identifying this particular topic for this assignment. They are very well discussed below. Culture

Culture can be defined as a set of behaviour patterns by certain community or society. Such behaviours may include the following: beliefs, actions, language, communication, thought, customs, values, and religious, racial, or social groups. This brings us to the point that all of us belong to one or more ethnic groups. Everyone is thus a product of different personal, cultural, and ethnical historical past. All the many factors mentioned above affect, in one way or another, our health. In the presence of such multiculturalism, it is evident that dealing with health issues is truly a complex affair. Nurses need to be able to find out the culture of every client to find out how to deal with them. Nursing themselves come from different cultures.

According to Potter and Perry (2006), different cultures and ethnic groups respond different to health care policies and practices. There are those that easily accept the system in place, while others have are slow in doing so. Nursing profession seeks to make our society as healthy as possible. To achieve this, there are a number of health promotion and prevention programs that do take place. Different citizens do participate in such campaigns depending on the cultural background or beliefs. This also leads to the discrepancies on the access to the required health information. In the long run, a number of people will have different health priorities, something that affects the general health of a given community.

Social and economic well being of any community is therefore affected by the culture. For instance, a number of health issues have been associated with the racial or ethnic harassment, either in school or at work. This can also be a major obstacle to the efficiency of the nurses. This is evident in an instance where language...

References: Craven, F., & Hirnle, J. (2009). Fundamentals of nursing: Human health and function
(6thed.). Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, p. 433.
Graham, H. (2007). Unequal Lives: Health and Socioeconomic Inequalities. New York: Open
University Press.
Goldmann, D. (2006). "System failure versus personal accountability--the case for clean hands".
New England. Journal of Medicine. 355 (2): 121–3.
Potter, A., and Perry, A. (2006). Canadian fundamentals of nursing (4th ed.). St. Louis, MO:
Mosby, pp. 6-10.
Thomson, V. (2010). Health and Health Care Delivery in Canada. Mosby: Mosby Canada.
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