Community Health

When providing healthcare to a community, it is not merely those that are sick that one is affecting. The most important thing with this is the upbringing and improvement of the healthcare, itself. In other words, treating an elderly patient that is sick with the flu is important, yes; and he/she should be given the best care possible. However, this elderly person wouldn’t seek medical help in the first place, had it not been taught to them as a child that when you are sick, you go to the doctor. For this reason, it is crucial that we put an emphasis on the importance of healthcare to the younger generations of a community. This is because these younger people now, are the ones that will be the role models and teachers for the generations after them. With this progression, a community’s healthcare has the opportunity to constantly improve so that in the future, not a single member of the community is without the care that he or she needs.

One example of the kind of healthcare provider that is key to this improvement is an optometrist. They have the opportunity to teach a community the extreme importance of eye care. With this being my desired career, I will be able to effectively help my community in showing other people how to take care of one’s vision, and why it is such an important issue. I plan on administering eye exams at the community’s schools to ensure that I have the opportunity to demonstrate the importance of vision care and the health of one’s eyes. Without vision, or the opportunity to see clearly, one misses so much beauty that the world has to offer; not to mention, it makes practically everything in their life much more difficult. Even the simplest of activities can potentially be treacherous without the ability to see one’s surroundings for balance, possible dangers, etc.

However, the job of an optometrist becomes increasingly more difficult when patients are uncomfortable with things such as an eye exam or a simple vision check-up. This is the reason why making the patient comfortable in such a medical setting, and teaching the importance of such practices, is such a crucial aspect to community health from an anthropologic standpoint. A patient should feel welcome and comfortable at their doctor’s office, whatever specialty of doctor that may be. More so, a patient should know and understand the importance of such visits and the different things that take place during these visits. Since this is that doctor’s area of expertise, he or she should explain the importance and reason for such tests and practices, so that the patient understands what is happening, and why it needs to happen. Demonstrating to the community the importance of healthcare via positive and informative means is extremely important to the progression of the community’s overall healthcare, especially those in the community that will be future leaders to that community itself.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Drew Selden says:

    I think you brought up good points in regards to the progression of healthcare in a community in that teaching the importance of such care to the youth so that they may lead and teach future generations. In addition to administering eye exams and showing the importance of eye care in community schools I think it would help to show some stats that show the kids about how many people actually wear glasses and need vision correction to help reduce the stigma of wearing glasses, especially in children 12 years or younger. I don’t know how it is in present days but I remember not wanting to wear my glasses to school and even lying saying I could see the blackboard just fine for fear of being teased.
    I also think you have a good idea in that vision care should be available to every single member of a community but even more than that it should be affordable if not free, something like a joint service between the school systems and healthcare providers. When reading your reflection I kept thinking about how it sounds all fine and dandy about providing the education to the younger generation but what about the kids whose parents don’t care or don’t have the means to provide the money necessary for this health care. How can we (as a community) provide the healthcare to those who don’t have the means to provide for themselves?

  2. Lydia Saracina says:

    A lot of very very good points in this reflection about health care. I agree, that the importance of health care, as well as the description and explanation to patients for why certain exams are done and why tests are being taken is extremely important. This is apparent especially to provide the patient with autonomy in regards to their care and health. The patient is above all the most important in health care, and with the care of the patient comes the understanding of the background the patient is coming from to feel safe and important in decision making. With this safety, comes the importance of the health care professional to try and get background, especially in terms of culture, of the patient and what it is they believe in and find to be secure. Some people may have sensitivities, and it is important as an anthropologist to understand why this individual might be apprehensive and nervous about such procedures and appointments.
    I think it’s lovely what you plan to do with your education and why it is important to you to offer education to your community, because that’s truly where growth begins, as education is spread. By offering what you have to give, you are letting others open their minds to a different form of care, to a different aspect of care that they may have never thought they would experience in their lives. It could truly be a learning experience for the entire community involved and change many lives for the better. Collaboration, as well as shared knowledge and trust, is what will bring communities forward and increase our ability to see each other and bring more purpose to our lives.

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