The field of preventative medicine is gaining ground in the medical community. This approach to healthcare seeks to increase the health and happiness of the American people by using several strategies to prevent disease and educate communities.
Health education, health promotion, and early detection and treatment of disease are all components of preventative care. The development of healthcare reform and the rise in the number of people living with chronic illnesses have contributed to the expansion of nurses’ responsibilities in disease prevention.
The importance of preventive care
Nurses working in preventive healthcare are responsible for advising patients to undergo exams, counseling, and preventative medicine to improve their health. Nurses may have a greater impact on population health and longevity by spreading knowledge about the benefits of leading a healthy lifestyle via public health education.
The meaning of preventive care
The World Health Organization recognizes that health promotion is integral to preventive healthcare. Personal health promotion is the process of teaching and motivating people to take charge of their health, both by proactively treating any pre-existing problems and changing their habits to lessen the likelihood of developing new ones. Education on healthy eating, regular exercise, and the dangers of tobacco use are all possible parts of health promotion programs.
Isn’t it better to treat illness before it even starts?
A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) manual outlines the many preventive health measures that may be taken to ensure that the population remains as healthy and disease-free as possible. After all, the CDC reports that chronic diseases account for around 70% of annual fatalities in the US. According to research by writer Hannah Nichols in Medical News Today, heart disease is the biggest cause of mortality in the US, followed by cancer and respiratory disorders.
Disease rates may be lowered, and the strain on essential services can be eased by taking preventive steps. They also aid in keeping individuals engaged and contributing to society. Avoidable chronic diseases such as obesity, hypertension and asthma cost the economy dearly in terms of time missed from work. According to the CDC, preventive healthcare is one of the best ways to ensure that elders maintain optimal health as they age, a time when the prevalence of many chronic diseases tends to rise.
What can nurses do to aid in the movement toward preventative care?
Research by Patricia Chiverton et al, published in the US National Library of Medicine, emphasizes the need for frontline nurses to participate in preventive healthcare. In this endeavor, nurses primarily educate patients on how to take the best care of themselves. The authors point out that traditional nursing focuses mainly on treating existing diseases. Therefore, the current trend toward a greater emphasis on preventive care is a departure from that.
A nurse manager’s role includes aggressively promoting the highest-quality health education for patients by nursing staff. Many courses, like the University of Indianapolis’ online post-master’s DNP program, would help in advancing your nursing profession and manage a hardworking team of nurses. Everything from lectures to labs to internships may be done online, giving you the flexibility to fit your education into your busy working life.
These are just a few of the many ways that nurses may contribute to the progress of preventive healthcare:
- Preventing heart problems: To treat heart disease, high blood pressure and other ailments, including stroke, diabetes and arthritis, nurses recommend frequent movement (at least 30 minutes of exercise five days a week).
- Promoting daily exercise: Managing your weight is another benefit of exercising regularly. Obesity, cardiovascular disease, and osteoarthritis may all be avoided with regular exercise and a good diet, which are all part of preventative care.
- Stopping smoking and abstaining from drugs: It reduces the risks of developing lung cancer, emphysema, and other malignancies, as well as other health problems.
- Alcohol in prudence: Early screening for illnesses, including liver disease, stroke and high blood pressure, and education on the effects of alcohol intake, may significantly improve the likelihood of disease prevention.
- Focus on prevention: Nursing professionals focusing on illness prevention try to diagnose pre-existing problems early so that they may be treated effectively. A person’s conduct may be modified to reduce the severity of an illness or make it more manageable.
Identifying, educating, preventing, and treating illnesses in populations are all aspects of preventative medicine. Nurses may engage in primary, secondary or tertiary prevention daily, depending on their role in hospitals and other healthcare institutions.