Term Paper: Communicable Disease: Measles

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[. . .] , 2011). Based on its high degree of contagiousness, vaccine coverage levels in the range of 95% to 98% are needed in order to prevent the continuing spread of the disease (Naseri & Salimi, 2011). According to epidemiological studies by Diekmann, Heesterbeek and Britton (2013), "Weather conditions may influence the probability of transmission [and] age structure may necessitate the use of a more complex model, including seasonal effects of the school system" (p. 78). In sum, measles is largely under control in the Americas, especially the United States, but lapses in ongoing vaccination regimens can eventually disrupt this protection (Diekmann et al., 2013).

Part B:

Appropriate protocol for reporting a possible outbreak.

In the United States, the Centers for Disease Control are the primary clearinghouse for reports of possible measles outbreaks (Johnson, 2011). Irrespective of the jurisdiction that is involved, though, public health authorities emphasize the need to report a possible outbreak of measles at the earliest opportunity (Johnson, 2011). At present, the average incubation period for a case of measles is 14 days, but the range extends either way by a week (Centers for Disease Control, 2012). According to the CDC:

Persons with measles are usually considered infectious from 4 days before until 4 days after onset of rash. Prompt recognition, reporting, and investigation of measles are important because the spread of the disease can be limited with early case identification and vaccination of susceptible contacts. (Measles, 2012, para. 3)

The case definition for case classification for measles including case classifications for importation status approved by the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) Case Classification for Measles (2009) is provided at Appendix A. The data that is deemed most epidemiologically important which should be collected in the course of case investigation is provided at Appendix B and the classification of suspected measles cases based on results of case investigations is provided at Appendix C. In addition, other information also may be collected at the direction of the state health department officials (Centers for Disease Control, 2012).

Part C:

There has been an increase in the prevalence in asthma in recent years, but the precise causes remain unclear. This increase has been attributed to greater exposure to airborne pollutants and allergens, as well as enhanced identification of the disease and the effect of other risk factors including obesity or infection (Knorr, Condon, Dwyer & Hoffman, 2004). According to these clinicians, "It is clear that asthma affects families through increased medical visits, school absenteeism, and lost work. Environmental factors, such as air quality, and social factors, such as access to health care, are thought to explain some of the health disparities noted" (Knorr et al., 2004, p. 1425). Consequently, community health nurses should be concerned about their patients with asthma and other respiratory conditions that are exacerbated by outdoor and indoor air quality and take steps to ensure that these patients limit their outdoor activities and avoid activities based on prolonged exertion during periods when air quality is moderate to severe (Shendell, 2007).

Conclusion

The research showed that measles is among the most contagious diseases that afflict humankind, but the disease has largely been eradicated from many regions of the world, including the Americas, through diligent vaccination programs. Unfortunately, the research also showed that although it is down, measles is not out and outbreaks continue to occur in different parts of the world that have allowed their vaccination programs to lapse. When the disease is introduced into pockets of humanity that lack vaccination, the potential for an epidemic is severe. Finally, the research also showed that community health nurses can play an important role in helping patients with asthma and other respiratory diseases by limited their outdoors activities and prolonged indoor activities during periods of poor air quality.

References

Diekmann, O., Heesterbeek, H. & Britton, T. (2013). Mathematical tools for understanding infectious diseases dynamics. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.

Johnson, T.D. (2011, September). Measles cases abroad linked to increase of disease in U.S. The

Nation's Health, 41(7), 1-3.

Knorr, R.S., Condon, S.K. Dwyer, F.M. & Hoffman, D.F. (2004, October). Tracking pediatric asthma: The Massachusetts experience using school health records. Environmental Health Perspectives, 112(14), 1424-1427.

Naseri, M., Salimi, V., & Mokhtar-Azad, T. et al. (2011,… [END OF PREVIEW]

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