Hepatitis C Essay

1828 words - 8 pages

Local & National
Interestingly enough, research shows that when it comes to United States Veterans locally and nationally, 5.4% of them who are in some sort of VA Health care facility are infected with hepatitis C. A large amount of those Vets served during the Vietnam military service era (Dominitz, Boyko, Koepsell, Heagerty, Maynard & Sporleder, 2005). During this time, soldiers were inoculated with medications that would prevent them from receiving any diseases while serving in Vietnam. Some of these vaccines where: hepatitis B, influenza, MMR/MR, meningococcal, tetanus diphtheria, and yellow fever. Military Personal used Jet Injectors to disburse the medications. This was ideal for ...view middle of the document...

Many in that area were unsuitable for treatment due either to heavy alcohol intake or consistent drug use. Healthcare professionals also faced the difficult challenge of trying to treat patients who did not want to have treatment (Wilkie, 2013).
Statistics
It is estimated that 150–200 million people, or 3% of the world's population, are living with chronic hepatitis C. An estimated 3.2 million persons in the United States have chronic hepatitis C virus infection. Most people do not know they are infected because they don’t look or feel sick (CDC, 2014). In 2009, there was an estimated 16,000 acute hepatitis C virus infections reported in the United States. Approximately 75%–85% of people who become infected with hepatitis C virus develop chronic infection. Infection is most prevalent among those born during between 1945 to1965, who were most likely infected during the 1970s and 1980s when rates were highest (CDC, 2014). A recent CDC analysis of death certificate data found that HCV deaths increased significantly between 1999 and 2007. The CDC estimates that there were 15,106 deaths caused by HCV in 2007.The CDC also estimates that the number of annual deaths from hepatitis C will triple in the next ten to twenty years (CDC, 2014).
Nursing Roles
There are numerous nursing roles that come into play with hepatitis C patients. Three major roles include the nurse as a caregiver, nurse as a resource, and nurse as an educator/teacher. The nurse as a caregiver will help the patient in all aspects of their life, physically, psychologically, developmentally, culturally and spiritually while still preserving the client’s dignity (Bastable, Gramat, Jacobs & Sopczyk, 2011). Getting diagnosed with hepatitis C can take a toll on patients, both physically and emotionally. The nurse as a caregiver is there to help them cope with life’s daily challenges, so that they can learn to adapt to their new circumstances. Nurses play a key role in helping the hospital team to ensure that individuals infected with hepatitis C are immunized against hepatitis B, and A. For patients who refuse to quit drinking alcohol, nurses can offer advice about sensible drinking and help patients keep their alcohol intake to a minimum (Poll, 2009).
The nurse as a resource can provide the individual and family with all the needed material to learn how to cope with hepatitis C. This can include new studies on treatment methods, and even information on how to live a healthier lifestyle. The nurse can also help patients find support groups (Moore, 2006). Nurses as educators and teachers assess the client’s needs, and then helps them learn about their health and the procedures they need to perform to maintain their wellbeing. This can include learning how to handle healthcare aspects, maintaining good hygiene, regularly taking their medications, and keeping up with their doctor appointments (Moore, 2006).
Relationships Factors In Development and Transmission
Biological
Pregnant women who...

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