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495/496 Community Health Nursing /Populations

This course focuses on the synthesis of wellness and population-based health and public health concepts to promote, maintain, and restore health to individuals, families and communities. Community assessment, risk appraisal, and application of community health nursing strategies are emphasized in the didactic and clinical components.

Coursework Highlights

Coursework is designed for engagement and collaboration. Here are examples of some of the assignments you will complete as part of NU 495/496 Community Health Nursing/Populations.

  • Interview a BSN nurse and discuss his or her role within a community/public health environment.
  • Design and present a health education lesson plan that addresses a common learning need among your classmates.
  • Evaluate health care spending in your state and how it affects nursing practice.

Weekly Themes

Each week of this course focuses on a different theme. Your group discussions and coursework will align with the week’s theme as well as its primary objectives.

Week 1 – Introduction to Community/Public Health Nursing

In week one, you’ll discover the scope and context of community/public health nursing practice. You’ll also explore the relationship between the structure and function of our complex health care system in the United States to community/public health nursing practices. Learn to:

  • Differentiate among different roles of the community health nurse including clinician, educator, advocate, manager, collaborator, leader, and researcher.
  • Differentiate between the functions and goals of public versus private sector health care agencies.

Week 2 – Community Assessment and Planning

During week two, you will begin to explore how the nursing process can be applied to an entire community. While assessing a community, the nurse needs to understand what data is needed to fully assess a community. The first step in the community assessment process is to clearly define the target community and population for the assessment. Only after the community is clearly defined can the process of collecting data begin. Learn to:

  • Define a community of interest to be the subject of a community assessment.
  • Identify the components of a community assessment.
  • Discuss methods for collecting community data.
  • Utilize the nursing process in the practice of community health nursing.
  • Implement a plan to meet health for a defined community based on assessment data.

Week 3 – Population Based Health Promotion

This course addresses health promotion from the standpoint of a specific population while helping you develop a basic understanding of population care. You’ll explore a specific population and develop a teaching intervention related to that group’s health promotion needs. Learn to:

  • Identify priority health screening needs of population aggregates.
  • Compare and contrast primary, secondary, and tertiary levels of prevention.
  • Design a health education plan based on the needs of an identified population aggregate.
  • Determine health promotion and disease prevention activities relevant to population aggregates (certain age groups, occupational groups, cultural groups, etc.)

Week 4 – Epidemiology, Communicable Disease, and Global Health

This week introduces basic concepts of epidemiology and communicable disease. Through developing a basic understanding of epidemiology community/public health nurses can determine the priority interventions for a population. After examining epidemiology and communicable diseases, we will then explore the topic of health on an international scope. Learn to:

  • Summarize the epidemiological process
  • Discuss issues related to obtaining and maintaining appropriate levels of immunization against vaccine-preventable diseases and controlling the spread of communicable disease
  • Describe various international health care agencies and some of the major global health concerns in developing and third-world countries.

Week 5 – Vulnerable Populations and Relevance of Culture and Values

Throughout week five, you will explore vulnerable populations. Vulnerable groups are at risk for exacerbation of chronic diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease because health care is not consistently available. Learn to:

  • Examine factors that lead to the vulnerability of health in certain populations and examine the impact of public health policies
  • Describe strategies that nurses in community health can use to improve the health status and eliminate health disparities of vulnerable populations.
  • Compare and contrast primary, secondary, and tertiary levels of prevention.

Week 6 – Health Care Systems and Policies

This week you’ll expand your focus and discover the factors that influence the practice of nursing and health status of the communities we serve. A key factor in the provision of health care is the economics of health care and how health care is financed. It is important for community health nurses to understand health care economics and financing because it directly impacts the care they are able to provide. Learn to:

  • Compare and contrast the role of state government and other third-party payer in health care financing and factors that affect health care resource allocation.
  • List the functions of key state and local county governments and state and county quasi-government agencies (e.g. United Way, Lions, etc.) that affect public health systems and nursing in your state or the United States.

Week 7 – Disaster Management and Community Violence

In week seven, you’ll develop an understanding for how disaster management and community violence relates to community/public health nursing practices. You will also examine ways to promote disaster preparedness in various groups and communities. Learn to:

  • Examine factors existing in most communities that influence violence and human abuse.
  • Explain the nurse’s role in each phase of disaster management.
  • Analyze primary preventive nursing interventions for community violence.

Week 8 – Wrap Up and Reflection

At the conclusion of this course, you’ll be able to apply what you have learned to your career and enhance your future nursing practice. Learn to:

  • Provide culturally competent community health nursing while recognizing the sociopolitical, economic, and ethnic characteristics of the community.
  • Apply core concepts of community/public health nursing practices to health promotion, risk reduction, disease prevention illness and disease management, global health, health care system and policy, and epidemiology.
  • Apply nursing tools, professional values and ethical principles to health promotion, risk reduction, disease prevention and illness, and disease management in the community setting.

Get Started

To learn more about this course or others in the online RN-BSN program from the University of Saint Mary, call 877-307-4915 to speak with an admissions advisor or request more information.