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According to statistics, 12.2% (over 5.3 million) of adults with a mental illness remain uninsured
WARIWCK, RI 11and 47.7% of adults in Rhode Island with a mental illness received no treatment (Mental Health in America - Access to Care Data, 2016). There is a lack of psychiatrists in the area with an undersized mental health staff, lack of treatment types and centers sometimes leaving patients in the emergency departments for more than 48-72 hours waiting for a mental health bed placement, and lack of communication between primary health and mental health providers (Mental Health in America - Access to Care Data, 2016). Rhode Island ranks 6thin the country for unmet needs of those with mental health disorders, accounting for 17% of individuals who have mental health conditions having unmet needs (Mental Health in America - Access to Care Data, 2016). This is second on the prioritization list because it is a more focused group. It effects a great number of individuals but is focused on one particular group. Also, at this time because ofthe number of individuals suffering from substance abuse and mental illness there is a huge push towards changing how we treat these patients.Lastly, is access to primary health care. In my opinion this is the top priority in this community and across many communities nationwide. Having access to primary health care can actual encompass the two other community-based problems stated above on top of having many other community benefits. It afford early recognition and treatment of diseases which leads to better outcomes. In todays’ society managing chronic diseases and preventive medicine are two of the most important takes that public health nurses could endure (Stanhope & Lancaster, 2014).“A 2010 survey by the American Hospital Association revealed that more than 50% of surveyed urban and teaching hospitals had ERs that were “at” or “over” capacity” (Barish, McGauly, & Arnold, 2012). With a rising number of patients being seen in acute care hospitals related to uncontrolled chronic conditions and the increasing costs of a hospital stay, if we could better manage chronic illnesses before they have an exacerbation, we could greatly reduce the cost of
WARIWCK, RI 12health care (Stanhope & Lancaster, 2014). Preventive medicine is key to controlling the overwhelming costs of health care (Stanhope & Lancaster, 2014). It costs more to treat illness then it does to prevent it (Stanhope & Lancaster, 2014). More than 60% of rural emergency roomvisits are being made by low-income individuals who do not have access to primary care medicine (Barish, McGauly, & Arnold, 2012). Preventing illnesses and exacerbation of chronic diseases takes a great deal of education, resources, and time by our public health nurses (Stanhope & Lancaster, 2014). They must identify vulnerable populations, identify what health issues are most apparent in the area in which they are working, and how to help the individuals in this population have access to the health care that they need (Stanhope & Lancaster, 2014).