It is important for nurses to learn about all aspects of nursing, so most schools include a public health nursing course in their RN to BSN programs. But public health problems do not only occur domestically; they are also a major concern globally. That is why La Salle University offers an International Public Health Nursing course as part of its online RN to BSN program.
What Is Public Health Nursing?
Public health nursing focuses on communities and specific populations. Often, domestic and global public health nursing relies on help from governments, nonprofit organizations, and in some instances, private companies and foundations.
Public and international health nurses work to alleviate suffering, reduce the spread of disease, promote health and wellness, and educate groups about preventing medical conditions or maintaining health while living with a chronic condition. They collaborate with a multidisciplinary team of healthcare professionals and a variety of agencies to assist communities in distress.
The nurses aid vulnerable and underprivileged populations by developing strategies and health programs, using interventions and advocating for equality in healthcare. They integrate their clinical knowledge with data to pinpoint patterns that may present a danger to the public's health. When a threat is identified, they can implement an appropriate intervention.
What Is the Difference Between the Nursing Professions?
Public health nurses in the United States usually work in communities, homes, clinics and schools. International health nurses can work anywhere in the world, in all types of settings.
International public health nursing requires global cooperation so nurses can plan, prevent or prepare for a health crisis. While both types of nurses target health promotion and disease prevention, international health nurses also concentrate on global health issues that can adversely affect large groups of people.
What Are Examples of Global Health Issues?
Throughout the world, international health nurses are dealing with the impact that climate change, terrorism, war, and the emergence of new and old diseases can have on populations. Examples of current global health issues include:
- Antimicrobial drug-resistant diseases
- High maternal and newborn mortality rates
- Human trafficking
What Can Students Expect from the La Salle Course?
In La Salle's online RN to BSN program, students are exposed to population-based nursing with an emphasis on global and international health issues. Students learn to identify trends in the health of populations. In addition, students learn about ways to promote healthy living and prevent diseases at the primary, secondary and tertiary levels for at-risk and high-risk groups of people worldwide.
The program also addresses public health issues and the relevant political, economic, social and ethical implications that may be caused by particular healthcare strategies. Moreover, specific countries are chosen for review so students can compare and contrast their systems with the U.S. healthcare delivery system.
People around the world are more connected now than in the past because of technology, air travel and migration, and that also means a greater chance of troubling health events. Public and international health nurses understand that factors such as genetics, environment, socioeconomic status, cultural background, poor transportation, scarcity of food and a lack of access to care can lead to negative health outcomes. With the right preparation, dedication and advocacy, nurses can achieve improvements in the health of communities and populations at home and abroad.
Learn more about La Salle University's online RN to BSN program.
Sources:Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services: Role of Public Health Nurses
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