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PU Epidemiology in Community Discussion

PU Epidemiology in Community Discussion


I need one response to each peer, each should be 200-300 words and must include references


identify one epidemiologic core function in your community:

One core function of Maricopa Public Health in the community where I live is to assess and monitor population health. One of the most important ways they do this is by conducting a Community Health Assessment (CHA) every three years in collaboration with healthcare and community partners such as the Healthcare Improvement Partnership of Maricopa County.  It is a comprehensive data collection to identify the strengths, challenges, health priorities, and opportunities to address and improve public health.  The assessment can help identify and prioritize health problems and facilitate planning and actions to address those problems (Maricopa Department of Public Health).

Why is the core function a priority in your community and how is it evident? 

One of the priorities that came out of the most recent surveys was access to care. Appropriate access to care means everyone receives the services and supports they need to maintain optimal health and wellbeing throughout their lifetimes. This encompasses both medical and nonmedical care which effectively prevents, treats, and/or minimizes the effects of health problems and supports quality of life (Maricopa Department of Public Health). As a Case Manager working in my community, I have seen problems with access to care firsthand quite often.  Many patients cannot afford the care they require even with health insurance coverage, this is probably what I see most often, but I also see transportation barriers, language barriers, cultural barriers, and knowledge deficit of the programs and assistance that may be available. It is good to know that there is a focus on improving the overall access to care within our community!

I think the role of statistics is crucial in order to probably assess what is going on in each community so that good evidence based decisions can be made.  Epidemiology is the cornerstone of public health, ensuring the study of patterns that assist with identifying the determinants of health and disease conditions. This allows for more informed health policies and the possible control of diseases and health risks. Data analysis and statistics from studies that model the spread of disease drive policy decisions both locally and globally (Khan, 2021). 

Khan, Marzia (2021). Statistics and Epidemiology. News Medical Life Sciences.…

Maricopa Department of Public Health (n.d.) Health Improvement Partnership of Maricopa County. CHNA CHIPdata reports. 

Seth:The Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine (2023) identifies six core functions of epidemiology: surveillance, investigation in the field, analysis, evaluation, finding relationships, and developing policy. Within my community, Charleston, South Carolina, a core function that can easily be identified is surveillance. Surveillance is defined as the constant collection, analysis, and translation of data related to health outcomes (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2023). One thing that I noticed instantly after moving to South Carolina was the prominence of tuberculosis testing within healthcare practice. I remember reporting to a skilled nursing facility (SNF) and, as soon as I started giving a report, the nurse on the other line asked me the results of the patient’s purified protein derivative (PPD) test. After telling the nurse that the test was negative, she reported that the result was all she needed and proceeded to hang up. While this brought about many questions regarding the quality of care the patient was about to receive, this left me with other questions about the emphasis on testing. I spoke with many of my counterparts on the floor, and these individuals let me know that no patient can move between facilities without tuberculosis testing.

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC, n.d.) reports that, as recently as 2009, South Carolina was ranked toward the top of states nationwide for tuberculosis cases with 164 with 3.7 cases per 100,000 people. In 2021, South Carolina was ranked toward the bottom of cases with 67 cases, with a rate of 1.3 cases per 100,000 individuals. When looking at the numbers, one can determine that the emphasis on testing has served the community well in decreasing cases.

This example demonstrates the importance of statistics within the realm of epidemiology. Statistical analysis and the resulting data provide the investigator with a solid representation of the problem and provide the ability to demonstrate progress.

Alabama College of Osteopathic Medicine. (2023). Public Health: Epidemiology.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2023). Introduction to public health surveillance. PH101 Series.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2023). Reported Tuberculosis in the United States, 2021. Tuberculosis (TB).

South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control. (n.d.). Issue: Tuberculosis.

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