Blastomycosis Essay

1154 words - 5 pages

IntroductionThe healthcare of individuals within a community has been seen throughout human existence. People from every culture have concerns with events surrounding birth, death and illness. Human nature leads to the path of trying to understand prevent and control disease. Human beings' ability to preserve health and treat illness is dependents on the level of science, the availability of technology, and the degree of social organization (Stanhope & Lancaster, 2004, p. 24).When the community is small, some of the technology, and expertise that is readily available in a larger setting may not be accessible. The article this paper focuses on came from a small rural community in Central Wisconsin.BlastomycosisBlastomycosis, a potentially dangerous disease also known as Gilchrist's disease, is relatively rare, but Wisconsin has a higher incidence than the rest of the country (Rare infection worth watching for, 2006). In an article from the November 28, 2007 edition of Foto News, the small, local, weekly paper of Merrill, located in Lincoln County Wisconsin titled "Blastomycosis - common in the fall," the people of this community were reminded of the dangers associated with Blastomycosis, which killed a 16 year old girl from that city last year.The residents of the community were reminded of the importance of knowing the signs of the disease, and that Blastomycosis is more common in the spring and fall when the soil where the fungus is found is disturbed. People with Blastomycosis have symptoms that range from pneumonia, to multi-organ failure. The first symptoms may be dermatitis, on the exposed parts of the body, or a persistent dry cough, fever and muscle aches (Blastomycosis - common in the fall, 2007).The CommunityLincoln County is located in northeast Wisconsin, with a population of 29,641 from the 2000 census. Merrill, the county seat, has a population of 10,146. The county has two hospitals that are part of the larger Ministry Health Care system, and four clinics affiliated with larger regional clinics; Aspirus Hospitals and clinics that have hospitals and clinics in central and northern Wisconsin, and Marshfield Clinic/Ministry Health care systems with clinics and hospitals throughout Wisconsin.The ethnic background for Lincoln County is primarily European American, 97.8%. The age, job class, household size, and wage is in line with national averages for rural areas. Of the households in Lincoln County, 4.5% were below the national poverty level, the national average households living below the poverty level is 12.6%, but this does not differential rural versus urban areas (Sawhill, 2006).Means to Address ConcernNationally there are about four of 100,000 people that will become infected with Blastomycosis each year. The number increases to 40 of 100,000 people in Lincoln County (Rare infection worth watching, 2006). These numbers donate Lincoln County as a hyperendemic area; having a frequency of disease consistently higher than other...

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