Health Literacy Program for Children from Urban Areas

Importance of the Program

Considering that the target group is children of different ages living in a low-income urban area, it is essential to provide them with a health literacy program to ensure proper self-care and self-learning. Since they live in the mentioned area, one may suggest that their parents may have low health literacy and they are at a higher risk of developing chronic diseases. In their turn, the identified children seem to lack the basic understanding of their body, including its functioning and needs associated with care. To overcome these challenges, it is critical to prepare the health literacy program, specifically focusing on the needs of the given population.

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Roles of the Community Health Nurse

Before designing the program, the first step should be the evaluation of the needs of the target group. As noted in the guideline prepared by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the first strategic action is the review of the existing situation, priorities, and expected outcomes (“CDC’s health literacy action plan,” 2018). A Community Health Nurse should answer the question of how the implementation of the plan would positively affect the target group. The most relevant goals and the ways to accomplish them should also be identified.

At the beginning of the assessment phase, the Community Health Nurse would play the role of the planner, who tries to understand the key issues to be improved. For example, hygiene, adequate physical activity, and proper nutrition may be considered regarding children living in this low-income urban district (Eldredge et al., 2016). In other words, the main role of the nurse should be to identify a set of skills that children should learn in terms of disease prevention.

More to the point, children’s curricula, leisure time, and other schedule specifics should be taken into account before creating the program. Paying attention to the fact that there are three age groups, the nurse should consider them separately since each of them seems to have peculiar needs. For example, if children aged between three to seven years old need basic care of their bodies such as cleaning their teeth and washing hands before eating, then those from 14 to 18 years old require additional education on sexuality, related diseases, and early pregnancy prevention. It is important to stress that the health literacy program should be convenient to both children and their parents to ensure the most effective outcomes.

At the end of the program, the Community Health Nurse would play the role of the evaluator, which means that all successes and failures should be measured (Ormshaw, Paakkari, & Kannas, 2013). First, the nurse should note the interventions that proved to be productive and lead to the improved self-care of the target group. Second, any challenges and failures should be clarified to work on them and eliminate them in further programs. Therefore, a comprehensive evaluation of the program’s impact should be provided after the application of the program.

As for additional sources that may be required in the course of the program implementation, one may list brochures, official websites, and meetings with the representatives of the local hospitals. These sources are likely to help the nurse in providing the fullest range of educational activities. By reading brochures and websites, children may receive more detailed information about their interests. The meetings with experts are likely to equip children with knowledge on the potential positive outcomes of self-care and self-sufficiency based on real-life stories.

References

CDC’s health literacy action plan. (2018). Web.

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Eldredge, L. K. B., Markham, C. M., Ruiter, R. A., Fernandez, M. E., Kok, G., & Parcel, G. S. (2016). Planning health promotion programs: An intervention mapping approach (4th ed.). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Ormshaw, M. J., Paakkari, L. T., & Kannas, L. K. (2013). Measuring child and adolescent health literacy: A systematic review of literature. Health Education, 113(5), 433-455.

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