I’m working on a health & medical discussion question and need an explanation and answer to help me learn.
AIDS/HIV has a very interesting history in America. It was so perplexing and not understood, that for the longest time it was called GRID (Gay-related immune deficiency). The movie we were asked to watch for this weeks discussion really emphasized the point that lack of public understanding, lack of the proper government funds, and lack of acceptance lead this issue to become greater than what it should have been. Between the years of 1980-1990s, pop culture and media already opened conversation and awareness on this disease. During Reagan’s presidency, AIDS research was top priority in public health. I think that is there was a better understanding of AIDS, how it spread, and how to prevent it like we know now many lives wouldn’t have been taken. The issue that still remains is that there needs to be a larger emphasis on screenings. It has become a focus as it was placed in the Healthy People 2020’s goals, but still HIV/AIDS is still considered a pandemic. Today, HIV/AIDS are widely researched and educated to the public. In the year 2019, there were 15,815 deaths among people who have HIV in the US. However, the annual number of new HIV diagnosis between 2105-2019 decreased by 9% (CDC, 2021). Although we are more educated on HIV and AIDS.
During the early stages of the AIDS pandemic, some of the factors that prevented people from taking seriously the issue were funding and the belief that people were immune to the disease if they weren’t gay. In the 21st century, however, the disease is still being transmitted, and safe sex is still necessary. Despite this, people can live long lives with the disease.
During this period, many people who were caring for AIDS patients were worried about their own safety. They also refused to provide the necessary care. To address this issue, the CDC released guidelines in 1982. These guidelines were based on the recommendations of previous studies regarding the protection of healthcare workers from hepatitis B virus infection (CDC, 2022).
The denial and non-acceptance of gay people were also factors that prevented people from taking seriously the issue. I believe that the AIDS pandemic could have been prevented if the public health authorities had taken the necessary steps to control the spread of the disease. Today, AIDS is regarded as a dreadful disease that the public can recognize. The media has also started to shed light on the issue by providing information about preventing it.
Middle-aged adults support their elderly parents whose health issues have consumed their savings and home investment to pay for their parents’ medication, hospitalization, or nursing home expenses. Moreover, middle-aged adults had to retire. Some have disabilities or lost their jobs. As a result, they do not have insurance. They have no choice and use their savings to pay their expenses or bills. Also, because of their age, they are at risk to develop illness. Changes in economic status and health issues can contribute to mental health problems, such as anxiety and depression (Edelman, et al., 2013, p. 583).
Some cultures live in poverty. For instance, middle-aged adult Native Americans live in poor conditions. They face high rates of TB, alcohol abuse, inadequate immunization, dental issues, and depression (Edelman, et al., 2013, p. 582). Nurses specialized in mental health can provide counseling or provide resources to help them with their anxiety and depression, promote activities such as senior health fairs. Nurses can initiate events to create awareness and help middle-aged adults to identify health risk factors, they also can provide one-to-one or group therapies (Edelman, et al., 2013, p. 584). It is essential that nurse provide education about coping skills such as breathing and exercise activities to manage stressors or provide community resources to middle-aged adults.
Occupational stress has a major influence on one’s psychological well-being. This type of stress can negatively affect one’s physical, psychological and behavior. Specifically, occupational work overload, poor compensation and work environments can result in high levels of stress and lead to poor behaviors and decision making (The Impact of Occupational Stress on Psychological Well-Being | JPMS Medical Blogs, 2017). People cope with stress in many ways but can often choose outlets such as alcohol which can further impact a person’s health and well-being negatively.
As a nurse, I have definitely suffered from occupational fatigue due to working in high stress environments. As a result of work overload and working short staffed on most shifts for the last few years. In today’s environment nurses are subject to emotional, psychological, and physical strains to perform our jobs effectively and efficiently. The demand to perform under such pressures can accumulate and affect our personal lives, causing issues like insomnia, anorexia or obesity, poor habits and an overall decrease in self-care.