Posted: September 6th, 2023
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, social factors
There are many factors that make people healthy or ill. This week we will focus on the social factors and determinants that impact health. It is time to get out into your community!
• Go online to the U.S. Census Bureau at https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/ Links to an external site.(*note, you will be using this website in the Week 2 assignment, so you can get started on collecting all the required data if desired) O Input your local zip code, city, or county. Try to get as specific data as possible (city, township, county). O Next, identify the: ▪ Total population ▪ Median income – Percentage or number of persons living in poverty • Go to your local grocery store, use a flyer, or app. Include the stores name, city, and state. Identify cost for the following items (please note whether items are organic): O 1 gallon of milk O 1 loaf of bread O 1 bag of apples (include price per pound) 1 bag of carrots 1 large container of yogurt O 1 2-liter of soda O 1 bag of chips O 1 package of cookies • Utilizing the data collected, discuss social factors that might impact what groceries are purchased. Try to be as specific to your community as possible (location, availability, poverty levels, etc.). • Discuss how a community health nurse (CNN) could use one of the 17 intervention categories from the Public Health Intervention Wheel to address areas of food security (Niel & McEwen, 2019)
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, social factors such as poverty and income levels can significantly impact the health of individuals and communities. The poverty rate is the percentage of people who live below the poverty line. People living in poverty may not have access to healthy food options or may not be able to afford them. Therefore, they may have to rely on unhealthy, cheaper food options that are high in calories and low in nutrients.
When it comes to grocery shopping, the cost of food items can also be a significant factor. In general, organic food options tend to be more expensive than non-organic options, and low-income families may not be able to afford them. Therefore, people may choose cheaper non-organic options that may have higher levels of pesticides or other harmful substances.
In addition to cost, availability of healthy food options can also be an issue in some communities. People living in food deserts, which are areas with limited access to healthy food options, may have to rely on convenience stores or fast food restaurants that offer cheaper but unhealthy food options.
A community health nurse (CHN) could use the Public Health Intervention Wheel’s 17 intervention categories to address food security issues in their community. For example, they could use the “community organizing” category to mobilize community members to advocate for better access to healthy food options. They could also use the “policy development” category to work with local government officials to develop policies that promote healthy food options and increase access to them in low-income areas.
Social factors such as poverty, income, and access to healthy food options can significantly impact the health of individuals and communities. Community health nurses can play a crucial role in addressing food security issues and promoting better health outcomes by utilizing the intervention categories of the Public Health Intervention Wheel.