Family Health Care Child and Adolescent Nursing Book Report

Pages: 5 (2208 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 15  ·  File: .docx  ·  Topic: Children

Australian Health Care V

Purpose of the Report -- Most countries are realizing that it is through the health and welfare of their children that the success of the future will occur. This is even more important as we move into an increasingly global society in which outdated political and cultural boundaries are replaced with social networks and areas of commonality. The purpose of the National Public Health Strategic Framework for Children, 2005-2008, is to utilize the available research to provide a developmental framework for health care and educational professional with which to establish their own templates. Indeed, the issue of childhood poverty, lack of adequate nutrition, hunger and the resultant mental and physical health consequences has moved from simply the academic world into popular culture with films such as Rabbit Proof Fence (2003), Good Food/Bad Food (2005), and Are the Kids Alright? (2004).

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Australia, like most of the developed world, has become increasingly cosmopolitan and pluralistic. It is because of these demographic and psychographic changes that the strength of the nation becomes interdependent upon the way that issues that surround the betterment of children are handled -- on a local, regional, and national level. "A wide range of physical and social environments such as the family, care, school and community shapes the health of infants and children…. The capacity of families to support their children in reaching their potential is affected by… [variable] environments, many of which lies outside the traditional health sector" (Healthy Children - Strenghtening Promotion and Prevention Across Australia, 2005). For a developed country, the epidemiological issues surrounding poverty and hunger within the subgroup of Australia's children are important in order to allow for an appropriately trained group of future leaders.

TOPIC: Book Report on Family Health Care Child and Adolescent Nursing Assignment

Modern social culture is so highly complex that the old paradigm -- improve by small steps based on fiscal needs -- is no longer what it takes to provide success in the educational and health related fields, especially relating to the needs of children and those templates that support a child's needs. Modern society is faced with an increasingly rapid push towards globalism, and due to the half-life of technology, radical and category breaking innovation is needed not just to maintain the status quo, but to provide the local, regional, and national environments with appropriate growth models (Horibe, 2001, Chapter 1). Ironically, it is the health problems of affluence that often make it difficult to adequately define the issues of poverty, malnutrition, and hunger in Australia. Redistribution of wealth from the 1950s on produced a burgeoning middle class, but as late as 1987 reports such as the Whitehead Study -- The Health Divide were placed on the backburner due to suspected controversial respones, etc. However, this report, focusing not only on mortality but on the hidden costs of hunger and poverty on children, showed that there was at the very least a 10-15% portion of the population living in undersirable circumstances without adequate nutrition (Lewis, 2003, 222).

In business one tries to insure that owners see marketing as an investment rather than an expense. So too is the structure of investing into children's health -- it is preventative medicine designed pure and simply to produce the highest quality citizen with the most potential for actualization possible. However, just as investing is more than randomly segmenting dollars, investing in children's health is more than a tactical plan that addresses issues when they become serious. Instead, it is a strategic direction that allows for the development of a framework that is multidimmensional and multidisciplinary. This framework, strategically managed, becomes part of almost every program developed because it is so strategic. In this case, what could possibly be more strategic and impactful than ensuring that Austalia's children faced a world in which they were able to count on regular nutritious meals and the spectrum of hunger was eradicated? (Thurow and Kilman, 2009).

Certainly, efforts have been made to address the problem of hunger, poverty, and malnutrition within the child and adolescent population. In fact, the millenium development goals have three rubrics specifically addressing these issues:

MDG Target

Illustrative Indicators

Halve the proportion of people whose income is less than one dollar per day

Share of poorest quintile in national consumption

Proportion of population below $1/day

Halve the proportion of people who suffer from hunger

Prevalence of underweight children under five years of age

Proportion of population below minimum level of dietary energy consumption

Ensure that children everywhere will be able to complete a full course of primary schooling

Primary completion

Literacy rate of 15- to 24-year-olds

(Lin, Smith, Fawkes, Robinson and Chaplin, 2007, 416).

Definition of Terms-

Foodbank -- An Australia Without Hunger -- Foodbank is the largest hunger relief organization in Australia, distributing donated food in 5 states and 6 regions. It acts as a conduit between the food and grocery industry and the welfare sector's needs (Foodbank - An Australia Without Hunger, 2010).

Hunger -- A social condition in which people frequently experience, or live with the looming threat, of not having enough food to maintain basic bodily function.

Hunger Project Australia -- A global -- no profit organization that believes it is more appropriate to focus on chronic, persistent hunger as distinct from famine emergencies and rather than distribute food (which does not solve the issue), to provide development of sustainable farming and resources for the indigenous population (The Hunger Project- Australia, 2010).

Overpopulation -- Briefly, a condition in which the organism's number exceeds the carrying capacity of its habitat, and therefore prevents sustainable living.

Poverty -- The lack of basic human needs; clean water, adequate nutrition, health care, education, and clothing or shelter due to an inability to afford such items.

Resource Allocation -- The ability for social and governmental agencies to allocate resources as needed based on demographics and social needs.

Sustainable Development -- The idea that crops, particularly food crops (flora and fauna), can be developed appropriate to a particular biome and need. Sustainable development requires management -- it is a long-term way of managing resources so those resources will be available to future generations.

2009 statistics show that there is a serious hunger problem in Australia. The statistics are alarming, and yet the issue remains somewhat a hidden social problems in which a number of those in the greatest need continue to suffer in silence. Regardless of the short or long-term debate on whether food should or should not be distributed to the hungry, the realities are staggering:

11% of Australian adults and 12% of children live in poverty, and the numbers are growing.

2.2 million Australians don't have enough money to take care of basic needs such as housing, clothing and food.

13% of Australian children live in jobless households

In Australia up to a million children don't always get enough to eat

The aged, 'singles' and the 'working poor' have become the new battlers in Australia (Foodbank - An Australia Without Hunger).

It is a documented fact that the academic performance of children impacts not only their health as a child but their future educational attainment, health profile, and ability to peform as solid citizens. It has therefore emerged in much of the developed world, Australia included, as a public health concern. Like much of the developed world, this is a broad question dealing with high fat, high sugar diets on one hand, causing an epidemic of childhood obesity. However, on the flip side, undernourished childen have decreased school attendance, their attention span is less, their academic performance suffers, and they experience a number of health problems, some of which extend into adulthood. More recently, studies have shown that the impact of a healthy breakfast on cognition, behavior, and academic performance is vital (Florence, Asbridge, and Veugelers, 2008).

Discussion -- From a public health nursing point-of-view, it is a crisis to have a wealthy country that has children coming to school without adequate nutrition. The Public Health infrastructure of Australia has a three pronged approach to assisting with issues that impact the nature of situations such as this: health protection, illness prevention, and health promotion (Australia's Public Health Infrastructure, 2010). However, this is clearly not a problem unique to Australia -- in the EU, United States and Canada there are equal concerns about childhood hunger -- all in areas that are among the wealthiest nations in the world.

Indeed, how can children be expected to arrive at school and participate in learning activities without an adequate breakfast? If they must wait until a government supplied lunch as the only meal they can count on all day there are a number of health and psychological issues that develop, all of which are counterproductive to the development of a sound mind and body and a future citizenry that is educated and prepared for the challenges of globalism. Strategic Direction 5 for the Healthy Children mandate deals with ways of transforming health systems and environments in order to achieve better health and social outcomes for children. Frankly, all other health concerns are… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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