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What is Community Health?
Community health is a medical specialty that focuses on the physical and mental well-being of people in a specific geographic region. In other words, community health is defined as a prominent topic of research within the medical and clinical sciences that focuses on the maintenance, protection, and enhancement of demographic groups’ and communities’ health conditions.
It is a different subject of study that may be taught at separate public health or environmental health institution. Community health is a prominent topic of research within the medical and clinical sciences that focuses on the maintenance, protection, and enhancement of demographic groups’ and communities’ health conditions. It is a different subject of study that may be taught at separate public health or environmental health institution.
What is Population Health?
Population health refers to the health outcomes of a set of people, including the distribution of such outcomes within the group.
Categories of Community Health.
There are 3 categories of community health namely:
- Primary healthcare and primary prevention
- Secondary healthcare and secondary prevention.
- Tertiary healthcare.
Primary healthcare and primary prevention
Primary prevention and a population-based approach are emphasized in community-based health promotion. The purpose of community health is for people in a certain community to modify their lifestyles or seek medical assistance. Primary prevention is the early identification and avoidance of risk factors that may lead to certain illnesses and impairments. On the other hand, primary healthcare is delivered by health professionals, who are the first people a patient sees and who may recommend them to secondary or tertiary treatment.
Secondary healthcare and secondary prevention.
Improvements made in a patient’s lifestyle or surroundings after the start of sickness or impairment are referred to as secondary prevention. Because it is too late to prevent the patient’s existing condition or impairment, this type of preventative aims to make life simpler for them.
Community health can only be impacted in tertiary healthcare by providing competent medical treatment to the entire population. Patients must be sent to experts and get sophisticated medical care.
Strategies of promoting community health.
Community health can be encouraged by using the following strategies:
- Health promotion,
- Health protection and,
- Provision of healthcare services.
What is Health Promotion?
Health promotion is any combination of educational and social actions aimed at assisting individuals in taking better control of and improving their health.
Factors that Affect Community Health.
The following are the 4 factors that affect community health:
- Physical/geographic factors.
- Social and cultural factors.
- Community organizations.
- Individual behaviors.
Geographic considerations (parasitic illnesses), environment (availability of natural resources), community size (overcrowding), and industrial growth are all physical variables.
Social and cultural factors.
Social and cultural factors – Belief systems, cultures, and prejudices (smoking in public places, availability of ethnic foods, racial disparities), the economy (employee health care benefits), politics (government involvement), religious ideology (beliefs about medical treatment), social norms (drinking in a college), and socioeconomic status are all under social and cultural factors affecting community health.
Community organization refers to the availability of health organizations (local health departments, volunteer health organizations), as well as the capacity to organize to solve problems (lobby city council).
Individual character or health-enhancing behaviors like exercising, getting immunized, and recycling wastes help to promote community health.
Duties of Community Health workers.
There are several responsibilities of community health workers. These roles include the following:
- Make linkages between disadvantaged groups and healthcare professionals.
- Assist patients in navigating the healthcare and social service systems
- Ensure cultural competency among healthcare practitioners who serve disadvantaged communities.
- Educate healthcare practitioners and stakeholders about community health needs.
- Provide culturally relevant health education on issues such as chronic disease prevention, physical exercise, and nutrition.
- Care and care transitions for vulnerable groups should be managed.
- Advocate for underprivileged individuals or communities to access services and resources to meet their health needs.
- Collect data and communicate it to stakeholders in order to inform programs and policies.
- Offer informal counseling, health checks, and referrals.
- Increase community ability to handle health challenges.
- Address the socioeconomic determinants of health.
- Reduce patient social isolation
- Determine eligibility and enroll individuals in health insurance plans