In the face of limited financial and manpower resources, nursing practitioners are expected to prioritize health needs in the planning and implementation of healthcare initiatives (Hodges & Videto, 2010). Nurses have a key role in planning and implementing healthcare programs by identifying the most immediate needs and increasingly assuming responsibility to plan, manage, control, and assess specific health concerns affecting diverse groups of the population within the community and/or workplace settings (Maurer & Smith, 2009).
This essay evaluates specific dimensions related to the prioritization of healthcare needs in the workplace context. Among the health needs provided in the case scenario, it would be plausible to start planning and implementing healthcare programs dealing with more severe needs such as hypertension, cancer and respiratory problems.
This prioritization is informed by factors such as the previous knowledge on the nature and scope of existing health needs, input from workers through active participation, and resources availed by management to implement healthcare programs (Maurer & Smith, 2009).
Given the scarcity of financial resources and manpower, it would be plausible to start targeting the primary level of prevention before proceeding to other levels. The primary level of prevention deals with educating the client population about safety and health practices that could be used to prevent the mentioned health challenges.
An effective and efficient healthcare program, according to extant literature, should start by informing community members about the dangers of ineffective protection against the health conditions that the program aims to curtail (Maurer & Smith, 2009). The primary level of prevention has several positive implications and some negative implications as well.
Among the positive implications, it can be argued that this strategy is not only easily applicable to the client population through the use of pamphlets and slide shows, but is also cost effective as it does not require sustained funding or additional human resources. Additionally, it empowers people to take control of their own health needs through the provision of relevant information (Hodges & Videto, 2010).
A major negative implication of this level of prevention, however, arises from its incapacity to provide early detection and prompt treatment of various health conditions affecting the client population (Maurer & Smith, 2009). This implies that the level may not be of much assistance to employees who are already dealing with the condition because treatment interventions are initiated in the secondary level of prevention. It is important to note that the tertiary level is a higher-level prevention strategy employed after specific health needs or conditions have already resulted in damage to individuals within the population (Maurer & Smith, 2009).
This level may not fit into the financial and human resource parameters of the textile factory as it involves limiting disability and restoring the affected members to their maximum possible capacities through clinical and rehabilitation means, implying that it is capital and labor intensive (Hodges & Videto, 2010). Nursing professionals need to gather a lot of relevant information and data if they expect to be effective and efficient in prioritizing the needs of their client populations (Hodges & Videto, 2010).
To effectively prioritize the health needs of the client population in the case scenario, information about the severity of specific health needs, number and age categories of the affected, benefits and drawbacks of specific interventions, material and non-material resources available and the likelihood of the client population to actively participate in the healthcare programs and take charge over their health needs (Hodges & Videto, 2010; Maurer & Smith, 2009), must be availed to the team involved in the planning and implementation of healthcare programs in the textile factory.
Hodges, B.C., & Videto, D.M. (2010). Assessment and planning in health programs (2nd. ed.). Sudbury, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.
Maurer, F.A., & Smith, C.M. (2009). Community/public health nursing practice: Health for families and populations (5th ed.). St. Louis, Missouri: Saunders Elsevier.