NRS 428 Select a global health issue affecting the international health community
NRS 428 Select a global health issue affecting the international health community
Norovirus is a global health issue affecting the international health community. This highly contagious virus causes gastroenteritis, with its primary reservoir being infected humans who shed large quantities of the virus in their stool and vomit (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC], n.d.). The transmission occurs via the fecal-oral route, where contaminated food, water, or direct contact with infected individuals can lead to infection (CDC, n.d.). For example, a child ingesting contaminated food can easily contract the virus (CDC, n.d.). Norovirus has a significant public health impact, particularly for vulnerable populations such as children, older adults, and immunocompromised individuals (CDC, n.d.). Outbreaks of norovirus place immense strain on healthcare systems, resulting in increased hospital costs due to higher bed occupancies and staff shortages resulting from illness among healthcare workers (CDC, n.d.). To address these challenges, healthcare delivery systems, like hospitals, enforce strict infection control measures such as contact precautions to prevent further spread of the virus (California Department of Public Health [CDPH], n.d.). Stakeholders for norovirus include the food industry and state health departments (CDPH, n.d.). The food industry plays a vital role in preventing the spread of norovirus infections by adhering to food safety protocols, proper handwashing, and stringent hygiene practices during food preparation and handling (CDPH, n.d.). State health departments, on the other hand, play a crucial role in surveillance, monitoring, and response to norovirus outbreaks (CDPH, n.d.). They coordinate public health interventions, disseminate information, and provide guidance to healthcare facilities and the public (CDPH, n.d.). These stakeholders can collaborate to implement comprehensive public education campaigns aimed at promoting proper hand hygiene and increasing awareness of the symptoms associated with norovirus outbreaks (CDPH, n.d.). By working together, they can develop informative materials, such as posters, brochures, and online resources, to reach diverse audiences and ensure widespread dissemination of vital information (CDPH, n.d.).
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California Department of Public Health. (n.d.). Norovirus.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (n.d.). About norovirus.
I didn’t realize how prevalent Norovirus was until you raised it in our discussion. Early February this year, at least 25 outbreaks of norovirus in California have been confirmed by laboratory testing, likely reflecting hundreds of illnesses in the state (California Department of Public Health, 2023). This included several outbreaks in long-term care facilities, and at least one elementary school outbreak, which required closure for control (CDPH, 2023). It’s true that the virus can survive on surfaces for weeks, so proper hand hygiene and continuously disinfecting high-touch surfaces are important to manage the spread of this disease.
California Department of Public Health. 2023, (March 28). Health Advisory. Retrieved from: https://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/OPA/Pages/CAHAN/Elevated-Norovirus-Activity-in-California-.aspx
Great detailed post. we have diseases like influenza every year that affect most of the population. Every year it causes so many deaths affecting the respiratory system. The social and economic impact differ from various places year to year. A way of prevention is to get vaccinated every year in an instance to prevent many mortalities. It is so important for healthcare workers and the population to get vaccinated to prevent it from spreading. Also, those at higher risk such as our geriatric population who have weaker immune system and are at higher risk of being infected.
I’m unfamiliar with norovirus, but any virus transmitted by stool and vomit can spread easily due to people not washing their hands correctly. Since covid, education on handwashing has been placed in all bathrooms and encouraged in all communities. Witnessing people washing their hands still worries me because they are not doing it correctly. Infected food workers are the most frequent source of food contamination in foodborne norovirus outbreaks (70%). Food workers’ barehand contact with ready-to-eat food (food that requires no further preparation) is frequently the cause of contamination (HOOVER et al., 2020).
HOOVER, E. R., HEDEEN, N., FREELAND, A., KAMBHAMPATI, A., DEWEY-MATTIA, D., SCOTT, W., HALL, A., & BROWN, L. (2020). Restaurant Policies and Practices Related to Norovirus Outbreak Size and Duration. Journal of food protection, 83(9), 1607. https://doi.org/10.4315/JFP-20-102
Global health issues refer to the multifaceted critical challenges that affect international health in one way. In this case, the global health issue chosen will be pandemic preparedness and response. Pandemics can be described as infectious diseases spreading across many countries, posing significant stress and threats to public health continentally (Stevens & Haines, 2020). Various outbreaks have been termed pandemics that are still potentially dangerous, including influenza, Covid-19, and Ebola.
The impact related to the public health care platform involves the intense strain from the presence of any form of a pandemic that could either start locally, nationally or at the international level. Most health centers often get overwhelmed by the highly contagious disease spreading alarmingly (Peeling et al., 2021). Medical resources often get exhausted from the continuous search for medication and ways to accommodate sick individuals. The hospitals can also be under immense pressure such that the people lack the facilities like beds where they can stay, or physicians lack personal protective items to help them while treating the patients. There is a massive struggle within the health departments to help track and contain the vast spread and extent of the disease.
There are various efforts that individuals from the different healthcare delivery systems perform to ensure that they have addressed the health issue. Hence try to collaborate with each stakeholder present to ensure that they try to contain the situation as fast as the mortality rates continue to rise. Some ways they work together include the pivotal coordination from international organizations like the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to support global health. The national government of these countries are tasked with the prospect of managing their domestic pandemic response. Governments develop stringent public health policies and allocate resources as preventive measures. The research institutions also ensure they contribute to controlling the pandemic by learning about the disease’s spread and transmission and possibly looking for possible treatments or vaccines (Stevens & Haines, 2020). Pharmaceutical companies are no exception since they tend to help develop vaccines and other antiviral medications necessary to combat the disease. The local health departments also stand to record and report the cases from the first one and possibly flag the presence of a pandemic as early as possible. The collaboration from these stakeholders ensures a vital and coordinated response to the pending global health crises.
Peeling, R. W., Heymann, D. L., Teo, Y.-Y., & Garcia, P. J. (2021). Diagnostics for COVID-19: moving from pandemic response to control. The Lancet, 399(10326). https://doi.org/10.1016/s0140-6736(21)02346-1
Stevens, H., & Haines, M. B. (2020). Trace Together: Pandemic Response, Democracy, and Technology. East Asian Science, Technology and Society, 14(3). https://doi.org/10.1215/18752160-8698301
Pandemics undeniably have a devastating impact on healthcare workers, particularly nurses, due to the overwhelming staffing shortages and the unprecedented demand for their services. The COVID-19 pandemic, for instance, put an immense strain on hospitals, leading to overworked nurses and overtime at rates never witnessed before. The direct consequences of pandemics on hospitals significantly burden healthcare workers, affecting their physical and mental well-being (Green, 2018).
Green, S. Z. (2018). Community & public health: The future of healthcare. Grand Canyon
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