A Literature Review of Health Promotion

Literature Review of Health Promotions Grand Canyon University NRS 429 September 12, 2010 Literature Review Traditionally the United States health care system has been sickness-oriented. However, in the last two decades, a new paradigm has emerged. This new paradigm emphasizes wellness rather than sickness. As a result in this change in focus, health promotion is now an integral part of the nursing profession. This research paper will review current literature from three professional sources relative to the nursing profession and health promotion.This paper will analyze: 1.
How is health promotion defined? 2. What is the purpose of health promotion? 3. How has the role of a nurse changed as the result of the emphasis on health promotion? 4. How are nurses implementing health promotion? 5. Identify, compare and contrast the three levels of health promotion prevention. Health promotion simply stated are the activities and behaviors that help individuals stay healthy. These behaviors and activities include self-responsibility, physical fitness, nutritional awareness and stress reduction and management.
In their research for “Brunner and Suddarth’s Textbook of Medical-Surgical Nursing,” Smeltzer and Bare (2006) state “health promotion can be defined as activities that by accentuating the positive assist a person to develop those resources that will maintain or enhance well-being and improve the quality of life. It refers to the activities that a person does personally in the absence of symptoms in an attempt to remain healthy. These activities do not be assistance of a member of the health care team. (Smeltzer & Bare, 2006).Health promotion in the United States has a single purpose. That purpose according to Smeltzer and Bare (2006) is “to focus on the person’s potential for wellness and to encourage him or her to alter personal habits, lifestyle and environment in ways that will reduce risk and enhance health and will being. ” The role of nurse’s has changed dramatically as a result of the emphasis on health promotion.

Historically, nurses focused on the diagnosis and treatment of a disease, sickness or condition and emphasis on health promotion was nonexistent. However, today that has all changed.Nurses are now expected to expand their primary care services to include psychosocial nursing, advocacy, behavioral science, counseling and advocacy in addition to patient assessment, clinical diagnosis and patient-case management. In the article “Defining Nurse Practitioner Scope of Practice: Expanding Primary Care Services,” Sherwood, Brown, and Wardell (1997) state “the role of the nurse practitioner continues to evolve in response to changing societal and health care needs as consumers in all settings seek increasing services”. (Sherwood, Brown and Wardell, 1997).Nurses implement health promotion strategies in a variety of ways. Due to the high level of credibility nurse’s have with their patients, they greatly influence their patients with their passion.
By emphasizing health promotion strategies such as self-responsibility, proper nutrition, exercise and stress management, nurses plant the seeds of wellness in the minds of their patients. While ultimately, it is up to the individual to make healthy changes in their lives, the role of the nurse practitioner plays a huge role in motivating individuals to adopt healthy habits.There are three levels of health promotion prevention. They are the primary prevention, secondary prevention and tertiary prevention. These levels are stages of the disease process during which preventive actions can be highly effective. Primary prevention focuses on preventing illness or trauma. An example of a primary prevention intervention would be an immunization.
The objective of primary prevention strategies is to reach as many individuals (who may be at risk) as possible. The majority of health promotion programs in the United States are implemented at this level.According to Liburd, Collins, Giles, et al (2007) “In the decades since chronic illnesses replaced infectious diseases as the leading causes of death, public health researchers, particularly those in the field of health promotion and chronic disease prevention, have shifted their focus from the individual to the community in recognition that community-level changes will foster and sustain individual behavior change. ” Secondary prevention emphasizes early detection and intervention against illnesses and disease.An example of a secondary prevention strategy would be a screening program. The objective of secondary prevention strategies is to limit the spread of infectious diseases as well as treat those individuals identified with a disease or condition before the illness fully develops. According to Peek, Cargill and Huang (2007) “health care interventions improved the quality of care for racial/ethnic minorities, improved health outcomes (such as diabetes control and reduced diabetes complications), and possibly reduced health disparities in quality of care.
Tertiary prevention focuses on recovery and rehabilitation after a disease, condition or illness has occurred. The objective of tertiary prevention strategies is to prevent and limit further patient deterioration resulting from a sickness, condition or disease. Joseph Betancourt and Joan Quinlan (2007) state “The paradigm of personal responsibility for one’s health, which includes the responsibility of patients to follow their physician’s instructions and adhere to their treatment plan, now carries great weight among health care providers. A careful review of the literature presented strongly indicates the fact that nurses are key components in the health promotion phenomenon. Their influence can be identified every step of the way. Their roles have changed (expanded) significantly in the last ten years. Nurses are no longer limited to explaining to individuals how to get well but also how to remain healthy.
The importance of this change cannot be understated. In the article ‘The Future Role of Nursing in Health Promotion” the authors Chiverton, Votava and Tortoretti (2003) state “never before has health promotion been more important than it is today.Nurses in education, practice, and research settings participate in the advancement of health promotion not only to the mainstream but to the forefront of nursing practice. Historically, nurse educators have taught patients how to manage illness; in the future, the focus must be on teaching people how to remain healthy. ” (Chiverton, Votava and Tortoretti, 2003).

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